A massive undercover drug bust on Columbia University’s uptown Manhattan campus – dubbed “Operation Ivy League” by police investigators – shut down three fraternities last week, including a chapter of Alpha Epsilon Pi, the national Jewish fraternity.
Investigators claim the bulk of drug traffic occurred in bedrooms and common areas of the three frat houses. Police arrested five undergraduates accused of peddling nearly $11,000 in cocaine, LSD, ecstasy and other drugs to undercover cops since July. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the accused included some of this Ivy League school’s elite students: a cancer researcher, a member of the fencing team, a Gates Millennium scholar and a high school salutatorian.
One 20-year-old AEPi frat member, Harrison David, accused of selling cocaine, lamented his father hung up after he called from the Manhattan Detention Center. Already refusing to pay $41,000 in annual tuition, David’s father wouldn’t drop $75,000 in bail money, the New York Daily News reported.
Kevin Shollenberger, Columbia’s dean of student affairs, laid down interim suspensions for the fraternities, meaning recruitment, initiation and social events must stop. AEPi’s national chapter has been notified.
The 97-year-old fraternity has yet to release a statement.