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Press Release

Convicted Felon Sentenced to 102 Months for Possessing Methamphetamine

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Utah
Multiple firearms and ammunition found at defendant’s residence, and a stolen truck

ST. GEORGE, Utah – United States Federal District Court Chief Judge Robert J. Shelby sentenced a Washington County man to over eight years imprisonment followed by three years supervised release, after he admitted to possessing methamphetamine with the intent to distribute. 

According to court documents, Cruzberto Alballar, 33, of Santa Clara, Utah, was confronted by officers at his residence during a search for a stolen truck in April 2023. Using GPS tracking, the truck was detected inside Alballar’s detached garage. Alballar told officers that someone he knew asked if he could keep the truck at his residence and Alballar gave him permission to do so but noticed it did not have any keys and the driver’s side window was smashed. While executing a search warrant inside Alballar’s residence officers found 160 grams of methamphetamine, a large jar of marijuana, ammunition and multiple firearms, one of which was reported stolen. The firearms and ammunition include a Smith and Wesson magazine with ammunition; a Smith & Wesson M&P firearm; a box of 9mm Fiocchi Luger ammunition with loose rounds of ammo inside; an Astra A 100 handgun, a Smith & Wesson M&P Compact 911 handgun; and a Diamond Back AR15 556 rifle. Officers also located multiple large capacity magazines for the guns, including a double-drum magazine. During a second search warrant of Alballar’s vehicle, officers also found a methamphetamine pipe and several bags of methamphetamine.

 “As the U.S. Attorney, community safety is my top priority,” said U.S. Attorney Trina A. Higgins of the District of Utah. “Mr. Alballar not only illegally possessed and intended to distribute narcotics in the community but unlawfully possessed firearms, as a previously convicted felon. We will work with law enforcement to investigate and prosecute those who are a threat to our communities.”  

Two bags containing approximately 160 grams of methamphetamine
Santa Clara-Ivins Police Department
A double-drum magazine
Santa Clara-Ivins Police Department

The case is being investigated jointly by the Santa Clara-Ivins Police Department and the Washington County Drug Task Force. 

Assistant United States Attorney Chris Burton, of the District of Utah is prosecuting the case.

This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and gun violence, and to make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. On May 26, 2021, the Department launched a violent crime reduction strategy strengthening PSN based on these core principles: fostering trust and legitimacy in our communities, supporting community-based organizations that help prevent violence from occurring in the first place, setting focused and strategic enforcement priorities, and measuring the results.
An indictment is merely an allegation and all defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law. 




Felicia Martinez
Public Affairs Specialist
(801) 325-3237
USAO-UT | Facebook | Twitter

Updated January 9, 2024

Project Safe Neighborhoods
Firearms Offenses
Press Release Number: 24-04