Man arrested on drug charges

Four pounds of meth found inside his vehicle

A man is behind bars after authorities found nearly four pounds of ice methamphetamine in his vehicle.

According to Det./Sgt. Jim Gibson with the Mid-Iowa Drug Task Force and the Marshall County Sheriff’s Office, agents with the task force late Thursday evening located and made contact with a vehicle near the 1500 block of West State Street in Marshalltown. Gibson told the Times-Republican that officials believed the vehicle was transporting methamphetamine.

During the traffic stop, the driver of the vehicle, Ulises Legoretta-Chavez, 29, was found not to have a valid driver’s license and he was taken into custody. Gibson said MIDTF agents later obtained a search warrant for Legoretta-Chavez’ vehicle and discovered the nearly four pounds of ice methamphetamine.

As a result, Legoretta-Chavez, was charged with possession of Schedule II controlled substance with the intent to deliver, a Class B felony; tax stamp violation, a Class D felony; and a simple misdemeanor charge of operating a motor vehicle without a driver’s license.

Gibson said the quantity of methamphetamine seized has an estimated street value of $40,000 to $120,000 depending on the distribution method.

He added that additional arrests are pending as the investigation continues.

Gibson said Legoretta-Chavez was not someone the task force was familiar with prior to Thursday’s arrest.

“We really don’t know much about this guy at all,” he said, adding that while authorities believe the suspect may have been living in Marshalltown, it was not clear whether or not he has an actual residence within the city.

Legoretta-Chavez is currently being held in the Marshall County Jail on a $100,000 cash or surety bond. A preliminary hearing is set for 1 p.m. Dec. 11.