Experts cautioned against claims that dozens upon dozens of women were injected with date-rape drug drugs. They said drink-spiking is the most likely cause of their blackouts.

In recent days terrifying reports have emerged of an ‘epidemic’ of young women being stabbed with syringes in bars and nightclubs.

Many of the accounts tell of blacking out and being unable speak. Upon waking up, they found a puncture wound on their lower back, arm, or leg. Images taken by the women show pinprick-like marks.

In response, thousands of women have decided to boycott nightclubs. More than 160,000 people signed a petition calling on for more thorough searches at entry.

Sarah Buckle claimed she was injected with a date rape drug while clubbing

Sarah Buckle claimed she was given a drug called a date rape while clubbing

But leading drug experts and toxicologists have said it is ‘highly improbable’ for someone to be able to drug someone using a syringe because of the technical knowledge required. They believed it was more likely that the women had their drinks spiked and then suffered injuries while under this influence.

Professor Atholl Johnston, President of the Clinical Contract Research Association and pharmacologist and toxicologist at St George’s University London, said: ‘I know of no drug that could be randomly injected into a person that would work instantly.’

John Slaughter, senior forensic toxicologist at ASI Bioanalytics, said it was unlikely that a needle would be in the skin for ‘long enough to have such a pharmacological effect’.

Women have told horrifying stories of being drugged with needles all over the country. The timing coincides with students’ return to university.

The National Police Chiefs’ Council said forces in England and Wales had received 24 reports of needle spiking in September and October. There have been 198 reports that drinks were spiked in the same time frame.

In Nottingham alone there have been 15 reports of needle spikings this month and police said they have arrested three men as part of a ‘wider investigation’ into drink spiking. The force said it had identified only one case where a victim’s injury ‘could be consistent with a needle’.

A petition launched last week to make it a legal requirement for nightclubs to thoroughly search guests on entry has already gained more than 160,000 signatures

A petition was started last week to require nightclubs to search all of their guests before they allow them in. It has already attracted more than 160,000 signatures

Nottingham, University student Sarah Buckle, 19, says she was recently ‘spiked’ in a club in the city and subsequently collapsed.

But David Caldicott, a medicine consultant and founder of drug testing project Wedinos, told Vice News: ‘The technical and medical knowledge required to perform this would make this deeply improbable.

‘It is at the level of a state-sponsored actor incapacitating a dissident, like the novichok incident.’

He then added: ‘If you were malicious there would be half a dozen much easier ways to spike someone.’

Campaign to boycott nightclubs because of drink spiking. Girls Night is renamed Girls Night after critics said it was not inclusive. 

By Michael Powell & Molly Clayton 

A campaign to boycott nightclubs to raise awareness of how women’s drinks are being spiked by men has changed its name and apologised for not being ‘inclusive enough’.

Organisers of Girls Night In have been accused of a ‘cowardly capitulation’ to woke warriors, with activists saying the removal of the word ‘girls’ will undermine its focus.

After several reports of women going black in clubs believing their drinks were tampered, the group was established last week.

Girls Night In was started by students Martha Williams and Milly Seaford, with plans for boycotts in 43 university towns over the next fortnight

Students Milly Seaford & Martha Williams founded Girls Night In. Plans were made to boycott 43 universities over the next fortnight.

Some people discovered puncture marks, raising suspicions that they had been injected.

Students Milly Seaford and Martha Williams started Girls Night In. They also planned to boycott 43 universities towns in the next fortnight. 

But the boycotts will now be named after the places involved, such Durham Night In or Southampton Night In. 

A statement released by the group has been attacked by women’s rights activists and likened to a ‘parody’ by critics.

In unashamedly woke language, it refers to ‘intersectionality’ – the overlap of a person’s prejudices towards such things as race, disability, nationality and gender, and to being ‘anti-carceral’, stating: ‘We want to assure you that the Night In campaign is working towards achieving intersectionality, and we accept we have not been explicitly intersectional so far.

Some women reported puncture marks, sparking fears they had been injected following reports of women possibly being injected while clubbing

Some women reported puncture marks. This was in response to reports that women could have been injected while they were out clubbing.

‘We are anti-racist, anti-misogyny, gender inclusive, pro-LGBT+, pro-trans people, pro-disabled people, pro-sex worker, anti-carceral and pro-community support movement. These are not just words. We will be changing how we approach the issue. We are sorry about any harm caused by our campaign. We are working to do better.’

One critic tweeted: ‘Women & girls are overwhelmingly victims of these crimes, men perpetrators.’

Feminist author Julie Bindel said: ‘It is a cowardly capitulation to bullies which the feminist movement should be campaigning against.’