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Drink spiking will become a criminal offence under new legislation Published Date: 22/02/2022

It has been widely reported that Priti Patel set out plans to introduce legislation to make drink spiking a criminal offence.

The Home Secretary is set to introduce legislation "targeting anyone who gives a substance to someone without their consent, 'regardless of a perpetrator's motivation'".

Opposition peers passed an amendment to the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill in the House of Lords committing them to reviewing spiking under the Sexual Offences Act.

But Ms Patel has taken it one step further and ministers will put forward their own amendment tomorrow, calling for a review of all forms of drink spiking, not just those linked to sexual offences.

She told The Times: 'Our response to such appalling acts must be as robust as possible to ensure that everyone is protected, regardless of a perpetrator's motivation.

'That's why we are proposing a more wide-ranging review and, if there is a clear case for making spiking a standalone offence, then I will not hesitate to bring in new laws.

The Institute previously reported that the National Police Chiefs Council told the committee there has been 1,382 reports since September.

Speaking to the Home Affairs Select Committee, Cllr Jeanie Bell, member of the LGA’s Safer and Stronger Communities' Board said, “Venues may be reluctant to come forward and say, '' we think we might have a problem here” because they're then concerned about whether they will be penalised because the licencing authority does actually have quite a considerable amount of power in terms of how to manage premises effectively.”