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Last Updated: Tuesday, 9 October 2007, 05:25 GMT 06:25 UK
Rape warning over binge drinking
Woman drinking a glass of wine
Binge drinking woman are leaving themselves vulnerable to rape
Women in Northern Ireland are leaving themselves vulnerable to rape or serious sexual assault because of their binge drinking, according to a report.

The University of Ulster research examined attacks between 1999 to 2005.

It failed to find any trace of specific date rape drugs - GHB, Rohypnol or ketamine - in any case examined.

But researcher Janet Hall said their findings showed alcohol levels of the alleged victims were on average almost three times the drink-driving limit.

"This research confirms the findings of other studies in the UK, US and Australia - that alcohol is a major contributor to vulnerability to sexual assault in social situations and acquaintance rape," Dr Hall said.

"Given the very high levels of alcohol consumption by some alleged victims, the findings also raise the question of what constitutes valid consent to sexual activity.

"The capacity to give informed consent at these levels of alcohol consumption is very questionable."

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