An Irish holiday-maker was mugged and forced to empty his bank accounts after being sprayed with a date rape drug on the Spanish island of Tenerife.

David Nelson (27), an engineer from Bray, Co Wicklow, went out for drinks with friends in the Playa de las Las Americas area on March 23.

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At the end of the night, he lost the group and went to get a taxi back to his apartment when he was approached by a woman.

Costa Adeje Playa de las Americas on Tenerife, Spain. Image: Getty

Costa Adeje Playa de las Americas on Tenerife, Spain. Image: Getty

"This drug turns you into a zombie"

Nelson, who currently works in Switzerland, told the Irish Independent his assailant tried to seduce him and when he pushed her away, he was "sprayed in the face with a substance.

"I was later informed by police it was the date rape drug 'Devil's Breath'," he said.

"I remember very few things after being sprayed. My phone was taken, gold watch, bracelet, €600 [$670] from my wallet and I was then taken to an ATM and the girl proceeded to take what money she could from my Irish and Swiss bank accounts until the cards declined. This drug turns you into a zombie."

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Nelson said he wanted to share his "horrible experience" to help raise awareness about the dangerous drug.

The police report described the woman as being between 20 and 30 years old with curly hair.

The borrachero tree. Image: Wikipedia

The borrachero tree. Image: Wikipedia

He said the police told him that tourists are regularly attacked with the drug scopolamine, more commonly known as Devil's Breath and has been blamed for thousands of crimes in South America and has now become a problem in European countries.

"I had never heard of this drug before as I'm sure many others haven't either," Nelson said.

What is Devil’s Breath?

The drug is called scopolamine but is commonly referred to as "Devil's Breath."

It is made from the seeds of the borrachero tree and according to the U.S. National Library of Medicine, is used to prevent nausea from anesthesia in addition to motion sickness, and helps calm stomach muscles. It also has been used to treat the tremors associated with Parkinson’s disease.

Date-rape drugs disorient the victim and can cause prolonged unconsciousness and serious medical problems.

It has been referred to as the "worlds scariest drug" by VICE.

The drug can put people into a zombie-like state in which they lose both their memory and free will.

Devil's breath comes as a fine white powder which is blown into the victim's face or used to spike food and drinks, and renders people helpless within minutes.

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It then disappears from the bloodstream within around four hours, meaning it often becomes untraceable before a victim has had time to be tested.

It is mainly produced in Columbia, where it has been used since the 1970s in sexually assaults, kidnappings and robberies.

What are your thoughts on this dangerous drug?
Let us know in the comments below.

Man in a corner distressedGetty Images