UC Santa Cruz student allegedly develops ‘Banana Plug’ app to sell illegal drugs

collin howard bananaplug_1550698596801.jpg.jpg

A UC Santa Cruz student was indicted on federal charges Tuesday, accused of developing an app to sell illegal drugs including methamphetamine and cocaine. 

According to authorities, 18-year-old Collin Howard of Sunnyvale was indicted by a federal grand jury in San Jose on drug distribution and possession charges for allegedly creating the “Banana Plug” app. 

The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of California says Howard allegedly hung posters on campus to promote the app available in the Apple app store.

“Banana Plug” is apparently a reference to UC Santa Cruz’s mascot, the banana slug. 

The app invited customers to make “special requests” in addition to offering students cocaine, “molly” and “shrooms.”

As of early Wednesday the app was still available for download in Apple’s app store. 

Howard was arrested in a sting operation last Friday, when he allegedly sold drugs to an undercover Homeland Security officer who contacted him through the app.

Howard made his first court appearance on Tuesday and is scheduled on Friday for a bail review hearing. 

He faces up to 40 years in prison and a fine of up to $5 million. 



Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Tracking COVID-19 in the Bay Area

Trending Stories

Latest News

More News