SAN DIEGO – Ninety-six students, local gang members and others were arrested Tuesday in a massive drug raid at San Diego State University.
Drugs including cocaine, ecstasy, marijuana and methamphetamines were confiscated in the sting, which came as the result of a months-long undercover operation, according to officials with the San Diego County District Attorney's Office and the federal Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).
Many of the students arrested were members of the Theta Chi and Phi Kappa Psi fraternities. One of the gang members taken into custody allegedly has ties to Mexican drug cartels.
The DEA said a member of the Theta Chi fraternity sent out a mass text message to his "faithful customers" stating that he and his "associates" would be unable to sell cocaine while they were in Las Vegas over one weekend.
In addition to large quantities of narcotics, money and weapons were also seized from sellers and buyers in the bust.
Authorities confiscated two kilograms of cocaine, about 350 ecstasy pills, marijuana, psychedelic mushrooms, hash oil, methamphetamines and illicit prescription drugs, as well as several guns and at least $60,000 in cash.
Undercover officers in "Operation Sudden Fall," as it was called, conducted more than 130 drug purchases with sellers, authorities said.
Officials said they were surprised by the sophistication of the campus smuggling and trafficking network.
Several of the 96 defendants — 75 of whom are students — were appearing in state court to face charges Tuesday afternoon.
Eighteen of the students were arrested Tuesday when nine search warrants were executed at various locations, among them fraternities.
The undercover sting was spawned by the drug-overdose death of a college student last year.
FOX News' Catherine Donaldson-Evans and The Associated Press contributed to this report.