Drug spiking is possibly one of the most insidious and vile offences one person can commit against another.
For anyone to attempt to take advantage of someone by furtively spiking a drink with one form of drug or another is a horrible and repulsive act deserving of the most punitive penalties the courts can dish out.
However, what is more worrying is not only that this crime is on the increase, according to gardaí and other contemporary sources, but that numerous incidents are unreported.
Gardaí say they have received more than 40 official reports of spiking across the country since the beginning of the year, but they suspect that many, many more instances are going unreported. It is estimated that the true figure may be at least double the official one.
Unfortunately for the authorities, many victims or suspected victims feel that if they do report such a case to the authorities, they are either not believed or not taken seriously and therefore do not bother to relate their experience to those who can do something about it.
Although this is a recent, if growing phenomenon, many clubs and venues are already well aware of its existence and staff are being made aware of its existence and trained how to cope with victims.
It is a sad fact that such attacks are not limited to pubs, clubs, and other venues but also occur at private house parties, which may further limit people’s willingness to report them. Undoubtedly, greater public awareness and vigilance is needed and young people especially need to educate themselves about the potential effects of spiking, but the courts also need to take a stance when such cases come before them.