UPDATE: Originating in the UK, in Spain chemically spiking a woman is sexual assault

UPDATE: Chemical spiking, puncturing or injecting of young women is spreading

Needle spiking - Image Colleen Michaels / Shutterstock.com

07.00 am : August 5 – According to a report by news site 20minutos, the attempted spiking, injecting or puncturing a woman began in the UK before spreading into France and now Spain.

Despite this police and authorities continue to remain in the dark with still no traces of any chemical substance found, and with no one arrested as yet for the offence, the motivation still remains unclear.

The Minister of Justice, Pilar Llop, has made a plea for those who have been affected to report the crime and to help police to try and catch those involved. She said that under the new “Only yes is yes” law, those that are committing these acts are considered guilty of sexual assault and that could lead to a jail term of anywhere between two and five years.

As far as the law is concerned two crimes are being committed, the first is to cause bodily harm which could see the perpetrator face a jail sentence from three months to three years of a hefty fine. The second is that of sexual assault which carries a stiffer penalty.

The police have added their voices to the call by the minister for women who have been targeted to come forward, reminding them to report the incident immediately it happens so that toxicology tests can be carried out as well as efforts made to catch those involved.

4.18 pm : August 3 – An increasing number of reports that a woman has been spiked, punctured or injected are coming in from all corners of Spain.

The latest in Denia on the Northern Costa Blanca where a young woman was targeted on her way to the ladies. She says she felt the prick before hearing a person saying in Spanish “I have it, I have given it, I have achieved it.”

But she told police that when she turned around she could not see who was involved. A quick look around by her friends and club security revealed nothing.

The woman then began to feel dizzy and faint at which point the club called for an ambulance. As in all the cases, a toxicology report yielded no evidence of any drugs.

Police in Denia say this is not uncommon with drugs like liquid ecstacy and ketamine leaving the bloodstream very quickly. The woman who has been released from the hospital has undergone tests for illnesses associated with needles including HIV and hepatitus.

Warnings have again been issued for people to be vigilant and to seek immediate treatment, as well as to take immediate action by advising the authorities as well as club security.

1.18 pm : August 3 – Reports of women being spiked or injected in nightclubs and discos across Spain continue to grow, leaving police baffled with little evidence to go on.

As of Wednesday, August 3 more than 20 cases have been reported in Catalonia alone, and as much as twice that number reported elsewhere in Spain including in resorts along the Mediterranean coast. 

Police remain baffled by the cases with little information to go on. At this stage, there is no evidence on who is doing the spiking, why they are spiking the woman and what if any chemical substance is being used.

So far no chemical has been identified with toxicology reports coming back clear, however, those spiked talk of drowsiness, dizziness, disorientation, nausea and headaches. Others have fainted or passed out.

What is more baffling is that the motive is unclear, with none of the Catalonia cases reporting that they were subject to a sexual assault or robbery.

In all cases, they were young women with just one man having reportedly been spiked. 

Police say they all keeping all lines of enquiry open and are giving the issue top priority. They have also asked anyone who is spiked to go to the hospital as soon as possible for a toxicology test, in the hope that the substance can be identified.

Because not all hospitals are aware of the police recommendation or have been exposed to the issue, the police recommend that you demand a test making reference to national police guidance.

It is also recommended that you report the spiking as soon as it happens to the national police helpline on 112 so that they can provide assistance and initiate an immediate investigation.

So far there have not been any serious injuries reported, but the possibility exists that someone may have an allergic response to the substance being used and that could have devastating consequences.

With an increasing number of reports of women spiked in nightclubs and discos, the police have asked everyone to remain vigilant.

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Written by

Peter McLaren-Kennedy

Originally from South Africa, Peter is based on the Costa Blanca and is a web reporter for the Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at editorial@euroweeklynews.com.