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Article Dans Une Revue Legal Medicine Année : 2023

Assessment of 19 years of a prospective national survey on drug-facilitated crimes in France

S. Djezzar
  • Fonction : Auteur
C. Gorgiard
  • Fonction : Auteur
M. Chèse
  • Fonction : Auteur
J. C. Alvarez
  • Fonction : Auteur
C. Martin
  • Fonction : Auteur
V. Dumestre-Toulet
  • Fonction : Auteur
M. Lavit
  • Fonction : Auteur
O. Mathieu
H. Eysseric
  • Fonction : Auteur
E. Berland
  • Fonction : Auteur
C. Roussel
  • Fonction : Auteur
Y. Gaillard
  • Fonction : Auteur
A. S. Hurtel-Lemaire
  • Fonction : Auteur
M. Deveaux
  • Fonction : Auteur
C. Pion
  • Fonction : Auteur


Drug facilitated-crime or chemical submission (DFC/CS) is defined as the concealed or forced administration of psychoactive substances to a victim for criminal purposes. This is a national program set up in the early 2000 s in the form of a prospective multicenter survey, the results of which this manuscript presents. Over this 19-year period, 5487 cases were collected, analyzed and classified into 54 % of suspected cases, 29 % of chemical vulnerability (CV) cases and 17 % of proven DFC/CS cases. In the overall data, the most prevalent victims were female (81 %), with an average age of 27 years. Sexual assault was the most frequent aggression (77 %), followed by theft (14 %). Victims of proven DFC/CS cases were from of all ages including children and elderly. In 934 victims of DFC/CS, 100 various psychoactive substances were detected mostly represented by benzodiazepines and z-drugs (55 %), various sedatives including antihistamines (16 %) and non-therapeutic substances (16 %). Gamma-hydroxybutyric acid (GHB) was found in 4 % cases. In CV cases, alcohol (90 %) and cannabis (32 %) intake were mainly involved. In France, despite prevention messages, DFC/CS has been an epidemic for many years and has been proven by our national study. This national program has the aim to identifying the substances used but unfortunately not the goal to fight against this phenomenon. Since 2009, we observed a new modus operandi of the aggressors who pose as taxi drivers facilitating the reception of the victims leaving nightclubs. We can emphasize that GHB is not the “date rape drug” but rather the benzodiazepine class is. Introduction Drug facilitated crimes (DFC) and chemical submission (CS) are terms for the same phenomenon in which the pharmacological effects of psychoactive substances (PAS) are used for non-therapeutic but rather criminal purposes. This phenomenon is spreading and becoming commonplace to the present day and has been documented elsewhere in numerous publications for several years [1], [2], [3], [4], [5], [6], [7]. If the crimes are focused on rape or sexual assault [8], [9], [10], [11], [12], various other criminal acts under the influence of PAS [13], [14], [15], [16], [17], [18] are described among victims of all ages [14]. Because DFC/CS has become a major problem in France, professional health authorities set up a national survey and then defined it as the concealed or forced administration of PAS to a victim for criminal purposes.1 A variant of DFC/CS called chemical vulnerability (CV) has also been defined as any form of aggression towards a victim while under the influence of intentionally ingested PAS [14], [19], [20]. From a clinical point of view, sedation and disinhibition are the main effects sought in the context of DFC/CS leading the victim to perform acts incompatible with his or her conscious will, as well as anterograde amnesia preventing the victim from remembering details [14], [21]. The empathogenic effect with modification of emotions is also a factor facilitating the sexual act and can be sought by the use of substances such as methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA). We present an update of our previous reports [14], [22], which here bring together all data analyzed for 19 years (2001–2019). This is the first and longest specific multicenter investigation structured according to a well-established protocol.
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Dates et versions

hal-04481621 , version 1 (28-02-2024)



S. Djezzar, Jean-Michel Gaulier, C. Gorgiard, M. Chèse, J. C. Alvarez, et al.. Assessment of 19 years of a prospective national survey on drug-facilitated crimes in France. Legal Medicine, 2023, Legal Medicine, 65, pp.102297. ⟨10.1016/j.legalmed.2023.102297⟩. ⟨hal-04481621⟩


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