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Controversial influencer Andrew Tate arrested in Romania on human trafficking charges after trolling Greta Thunberg on Twitter

Andrew Tate, a controversial digital media influencer, is said to have been jailed in Romania as part of a human trafficking and rape investigation. Tate’s residence in Bucharest, where he was held alongside his brother Tristan, was raided by the Directorate for Investigating Organized Crime and Terrorism (DIICOT). The brothers’ imprisonment was verified by their lawyer on Friday. 

Romania’s Directorate for Investigating Organized Crime and Terrorism (DIICOT) issued a statement and said that four suspects, two British citizens, and two Romanian citizens were suspected of being part of a criminal group focused on human trafficking. “The four suspects … appear to have created an organized crime group with the purpose of recruiting, housing, and exploiting women by forcing them to create pornographic content meant to be seen on specialized websites for a cost,” the prosecutor said.

According to the reports, the brothers, along with two Romanian nationals, have been under scrutiny since April. The video of their arrest was extensively shared on social media in which Tate and his brother could be seen being escorted away from a luxurious villa in Bucharest. The police also recovered guns, knives, and money from the detained suspects, as per reports.

Tate is a four-time World kickboxing champion and is ‘well known’ for his misogynistic way of thinking. The former kickboxer rose to prominence in 2016 after being booted from the British TV show Big Brother due to a video that showed him assaulting a lady. He later became notorious online after Twitter, YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok banned him for saying that women should ‘bear responsibility’ for being sexually assaulted. TikTok spokesperson while banning Tate from the platform in August this year remarked that ‘misogyny is a hateful ideology that is not tolerated.’ However, his account on Twitter was later reinstated in November 2022.

Tate converted his religion to Islam in 2022

Notably, the British American ‘influencer’ is also said to have converted his religion to Islam in October this year. The former kickboxer, who was born in Chicago and raised in Luton, previously hailed Islam as “the last true religion in the world,” and he later verified that he had become a Muslim after a video of him praying in a mosque went viral.

Post by Tate on Gettr (Image source- Tribune.pk)

“This is why I’m Muslim. Any Christian who believes in good and understands the true battle against evil must convert. So be patient, indeed the promise of Allah is TRUTH Quran 30:60,” read his note on one of his remaining social media accounts called Gettr. The video of him offering Namaz with Hollywood actor Tam Khan was posted on Twitter by the actor. “Praise be to God, to receive wide interaction and the admiration of thousands of followers,” Khan captioned the video on his social media sites.

Pizza box ascertained Tate’s presence in Romania, leading to his arrest

Interestingly, in the current case, Tate was detained by the authorities who seemingly tracked his social media accounts to discover his location after he engaged in a verbal brawl with Swedish environment activist Greta Thunberg. Thunberg mocked Andrew Tate recently when the kickboxer included her in a tweet boasting about the significant emissions produced by his huge automobile collection. Greta Thunberg took the ‘small d*ck energy’ jibe at Andrew Tate in response to his tweet.

Thunberg’s response to Tate’s tweet boasting about his luxury car collection

Later on December 28, Tate took to Twitter to post a 2-minute video mocking Thunberg over her previous tweet. The kickboxer in the video could be seen enjoying cigars and Pizza from ‘Jerry’s Pizza’, a Romanian restaurant chain. Several social media accounts and media reports claim that the box of Pizza displayed in Tate’s video helped authorities in ascertaining that he was in Romania which certainly led to his arrest.

Tate would date women aged 18 or 19 to ‘make an imprint’ on them

As mentioned earlier, Tate is notorious for his misogynistic ideology. He has been saying that women belong in the home, can’t drive, and are a man’s property. He has posted several videos online in which he talks about abusing women, choking them, trashing their belongings, and stopping them from going out. He was banned by Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, and Twitter after he stated that rape victims must ‘bear responsibility’ for their attack. Reports mention that he used to date women aged 18 or 19 because they must have been sexually naive, as opposed to older women who he said ‘must have been involved with dozens of men’.

Several domestic violence groups have earlier characterized Tate’s beliefs as severe misogyny capable of radicalizing men and boys to perpetrate damage offline. However, Tate was one of the most well-known people on TikTok, where his videos have been seen 11.6 billion times before August when the platform imposed a ban on his account.

Compilation of videos posted by Tate against women on TikTok

In one of the videos posted on YouTube, Tate could also be seen openly suggesting his fans adopt a misogynistic approach towards women online. Also, he could be seen calling a woman ‘bit*h’ on video who served him and his brother coffee and spilled some by mistake.

Tate opined, ‘Women should bear some responsibility on being raped’

Raised in a Luton estate, the son of a catering assistant and chess master, worked as a TV producer in his twenties while also training himself as a kickboxer at a nearby gym. In 2016, his public career looked to be finished before it had even begun, when he was evicted from Big Brother after a video of him beating a lady with a belt surfaced. Soon later, a second video surfaced in which he could be seen ordering a lady to tally the bruises and wounds he allegedly gave her.

More debate ensued as his Twitter page contained posts with homophobic and racist insults. Then in September 2017, he was condemned by mental healthcare institutions for suggesting depression isn’t real. The following month, he weighed in on #MeToo, stating women should “carry some responsibility” for being raped, a viewpoint he has since reiterated and which, among other things, led to his Twitter ban.

Interview clip in which Tate says ‘women should bear responsibility for being raped’

According to reports, Tate had posted several videos in which he related an incident in which a lady knocked a phone out of his hand in a bar and a man struck him, prompting them to start wrestling. He claimed that during the scuffle, he accidentally struck the woman and shattered her jaw. In another video, he claimed that he was probed by police for allegedly assaulting a lady, which he denied, in a case in which his residence was raided, equipments were taken, and he was kept in jail for two days.

Tate is believed to have left the UK for Romania around the time when UK police were investigating abuse allegations. In one video explaining his reasoning for the shift, he stated that it would be simpler to avoid rape accusations. “I’m not a rapist, but I like the idea of just being able to do what I want. I like being free,” he was quoted saying.

In the current case, Romania’s Directorate for Investigating Organized Crime and Terrorism (DIICOT) has issued a statement saying that four suspects, two British citizens, and two Romanian citizens were suspected of being part of a criminal group focused on human trafficking. The authorities arrested Tate and his brother along with two Romanian nationals for recruiting, housing, and exploiting women by forcing them to create pornographic content meant to be seen on specialized websites for a cost.

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