A Provo man accused of running a drug-distribution operation will be tried on 20 related charges July 25, a 4th District Court judge has ruled.
The defendant, Ross Gallegos, on Friday pleaded not guilty before Judge Ray M. Harding to three counts of engaging in a pattern of unlawful activity and 17 counts of distributing or arranging to distribute a controlled substance. All charges are second-degree felonies, each punishable by up to 15 years in prison.Harding granted a motion by defense attorney Randy Gaither, who asked for a pretrial hearing on the suppression of wiretapping evidence, upon which the prosecution's case is based. The hearing will be July 12 at 9 a.m.
The judge, however, rejected Gaither's request to reduce bail from $50,000 to $5,000.
During a preliminary hearing earlier this month, attorneys from the Utah County attorney's office presented numerous tapes of phone conversations in which they said the defendant discussed drug deals involving cocaine and marijuana. Prosecutors, however, did not confiscate any drugs during the course of their investigation.
The telephone conversations were recorded between March 15 and May 8 of this year. Gallegos was arrested May 16.