SAN JOSE (CBS13) — A federal jury indicted Collin Riley Howard Tuesday, charging him with distribution and possession with intent to distribute cocaine and methamphetamine.

Howard, 18, possessed and distributed the drugs between Nov. 7 and 28 in 2018, according to the indictment. An affidavit filed by Homeland Security alleges that he developed an iPhone app “Banana Plug,” offering for sale contraband including cocaine, Molly and shrooms. The app also allowed customers to make special requests.

UC Santa Cruz police officer reportedly found flyers for the app posted around the UC Santa Cruz campus, where the mascot is the Banana Slug.

The officer, along with a Homeland Security Investigations agent, said they used the app to request weed and cocaine and communicated with Howard on Snapchat to set up the purchase.

An undercover agent made a total of four purchases, buying marijuana, cocaine, and more than five grams of meth. At the fourth meeting, Howard was arrested.

Howard was indicted on multiple drug charges. He was arrested on the federal charges on Feb. 15 and released on Tuesday after his initial appearance.

He will be back in court on Feb. 22 for a bail review hearing. He faces at least 20 years in prison and millions of dollars in fines if convicted.


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