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Many dangers lurk with knockout drops at summer festivals


Celebration dangers: ABDA pharmacists association warns of knockout drops
In the summer months, numerous festivals and celebrations take place outdoors. The relaxed atmosphere is used by some criminals to mix dangerous knockout drops into the drinks of unsuspecting revelers. Affected people can become victims of theft or sexual abuse.

Knockout drops secretly mixed in drinks
In the warm summer months, public festivals and social celebrations take place in many places. Some criminals could use the relaxed atmosphere to mix knockout drops in drinks and, for example, sexually abuse the victims, warns the Federal Association of German Pharmacists' Associations (ABDA) in a recent press release.

Katja Grieger from the Federal Association of Women's Counseling Centers and Women's Emergency Calls (bff) said: "The issue of sexual assault in connection with knockout drops is still a topical issue for women's emergency calls and counseling centers."

Do not accept open drinks from strangers
“K.O. drops have different effects, depending on your physical condition, how long ago the last meal was, alcohol consumption, medication or drug consumption. Depending on the dosage, the effects range from relaxation, sexual disinhibition to profound loss of consciousness, which can also be life-threatening, ”says the internet portal“ ko-tropfen-nein-danke.de ”.

The drops often make you unwilling and unable to move. Experts therefore advise you not to accept open drinks from strangers or party acquaintances and not to leave your open drink unobserved.

Colorless and largely odorless
However, knockout drops are not only administered at public events. Experts have been warning for years that the drugs are also used in the private sphere in connection with sexual abuse.

“The tricky thing: the substances are colorless and largely odorless. Mixed with a drink or in food, knockout drops are often not smell or taste for unsuspecting people, ”says the Internet portal.

Better controls and stricter penalties are required
According to the ABDA, criminals buy drugs without a prescription or approval via the Internet or call centers. Gabriele Overwiening from the executive board of the Federal Chamber of Pharmacists, therefore, demanded: "International criminal dealing in drugs and chemicals must be better controlled and severely punished."

Substance is also used as a party drug
According to the information, perpetrators primarily use gamma-hydroxybutyric acid (GHB) as knockout drops. In lower doses, the substance has a mood-lifting and stimulating effect and is therefore used as a party drug (liquid ecstasy). Larger amounts of it, however, have a sleepy and muscle relaxing effect. The attackers exploit this specifically for the purpose of sexual violence, but also for robbery or theft. GHB is a colorless liquid that can easily be added to beverages without the victim noticing.

According to the experts, its effect starts after about a quarter of an hour and lasts for a few hours. The victims usually have poor memories the next day and are very unsure of what has happened to them. You suffer from severe headaches, dizziness and nausea.

Those affected should get professional help
"Anyone who notices a 'film tear' despite having low amounts of alcohol should contact a specialist advice center to discuss the next steps. Many substances can only be detected for a short time. But even after a long time after the incident, a consultation can be very helpful for processing, ”says Grieger.

Because of the short time it can be traced, some experts recommend keeping urine cool in a clean glass so that it can be examined later. If suspected, those affected should contact the police and / or a doctor. (ad)

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