Don’t be fooled by the term ‘date rape — it’s not any less serious than rape by a stranger. The general distinction between rape and date rape is that date rape occurs during the course of a date. Despite the distinction, however, it’s important to remember that both the rape of a stranger and date rape carry the same punishments.

Although date rape can occur with or without the use of date rape drugs, these types of drugs are often used to commit date rapes — hence being dubbed “date rape drugs.” The official name of the drugs that are collectively referred to as date rape drugs are Rohypnol, GHB, and Ketamine. If one of these date rape drugs is used to commit a rape, you should expect to be punished for both rape and possessing date rape drugs (upon conviction).

Factors for Determining the Punishment for Drug Possession

The punishment for drug possession will depend on a variety of circumstances. First, it will depend on if you’re charged under federal or state laws. Second, the type of drug and the amount will also be a factor in determining the punishment. Generally, drugs that can cause the most harm will be punished more harshly. So, it’s no surprise that Rohypnol is generally punished more harshly than some other drugs.

For example, on the federal level, possessing any amount of Rohypnol can be punished by up to three years in prison and a $5,000 fine. The punishment for possessing Rohypnol, or other date rape drugs, will depend on the specific laws of the state where you’re caught with the drug.

Under California criminal laws, for example, possessing Rohypnol can be charged as a misdemeanor or a felony, so the punishment may be up to one year in jail or three years in prison, respectively. Keep in mind that any punishment for possession of date rape drugs will be in addition to the punishment for rape (if you’re charged and convicted of rape).

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