Israeli Police Nab Suspected Serial Date Rapist, Drink in Hand

Female police agent helps catch man who allegedly met women online and spiked their drinks before sexually assaulting them.

Yaniv Kubovich
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Rape victim (illustration).
Rape victim (illustration).Credit: Tomer Noiberg
Yaniv Kubovich

Early Saturday morning the police arrested a 37-year-old Tel Aviv resident on suspicion of sexually assaulting women after spiking their drinks with a date rape drug. Apprehended by an undercover agent, the man was brought to Tel Aviv Magistrate’s Court Saturday evening for a hearing that extended his remand by three days.

The Yarkon District police had lately received a number of highly similar complaints from young women, which led them to the man. The women told of having met someone online who tried to meet with them in person as soon as possible. They also said the man brought with him a bottle of some alcoholic beverage, and that as soon as they drank some of it, they passed out and didn’t remember anything more. Some of the women said that when they awoke they were aware that they had been sexually assaulted, but they could not remember any details of the attack.

The women also said that when they woke up, the man yelled at them and accused them of drinking too much until they passed out. However, no traces of the date rape drug were found in the women’s bodies.

Tel Aviv District Commander Major General Benzi Sau instructed his officers to pay special attention to the date rape drug issue. Rather than arrest the suspect outright, a female police agent was recruited to help with the investigation. She developed a brief online relationship with the suspect, and then a meeting was arranged in an apartment in which listening equipment had been hidden. The suspect also brought along an alcoholic drink to this meeting, and while the two were in the apartment, police officers waited outside the building, ready to charge inside.

The plan was that the agent would not drink any of the beverage brought by the suspect, and that the arrest would be made as soon as he asked her to drink it.

The charges brought against the suspect include having sexual relations without the other party’s consent, denying the ability to object for the purpose of committing a crime, and invasion of privacy.

The drink that the man brought along will be tested by the laboratory at Shiba Tel Hashomer Hospital to see if it contains the date rape drug. The police say that if the results are negative, the suspect will be released and not tried. If the bottle is found to contain the drug, it will be an achievement for the police, as no suspect has hitherto been indicted for a similar act.

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