Romania Charges Tate Brothers with Rape, Human Trafficking

Published: 20 June 2023

Andrew Tate

Andrew Tate, controversial influencer, misogynist and social media sensation, was charged with rape and human trafficking, together with his younger brother Tristan and another two accomplices, in the latest move of Romanian authorities. (Photo: Anything Goes With James English, Wikimedia, License)

By Zdravko Ljubas

Romanian officials charged Andrew Tate, a vocal misogynist and social media celebrity, his brother Tristan, and two other accomplices on Tuesday with rape, human trafficking, and establishing an organized crime gang to sexually exploit women.

The country’s Directorate for Investigating Organized Crime and Terrorism (DIICOT) said in a statement that its prosecutor ordered four people to be hauled before the court, including two suspects with dual British and American citizenship, as well as two Romanian nationals.

Though the statement did not name the suspects, the DIICOT Press Office verified to OCCRP that the paper was related to the Tate brothers.

In addition to the serious charges of human trafficking and sexual exploitation, the brothers and their accomplices were charged with “illegal access to the computer system, alteration of the integrity of computer data, as well as instigation to strike or other violence and beating or other violence,” according to DIICOT.

The Romanian law enforcement agency claimed that the four created an organized criminal group in early 2021, entrusted with coordinating human trafficking not only in Romania, but also in other countries like the U.S. and the U.K.

The victims were recruited by foreign nationals who would lure them with the promise of a marriage or romantic relationship and give them a feeling of genuine sentiments of love, or what was known as the “loverboy approach”.

Once they fell for the love promise, they were transferred and held in premises in Ilfov county – Bucharest area – where, under fear of violence, they were sexually exploited by group members who would record them in order to post pornographic content on certain social media sites.

In the instance of the rape accusation, the victim was compelled to have sexual contact repeatedly in March 2022 by one of the defendants using physical violence and mental coercion, according to DIICOT.

It also said that some of the victims were also subjected to forced labor.

DIICOT stated that the indictment also requested confiscation of Tate’s property, including plots of land and houses in Ilfov, Prahova and Braşov counties, 15 luxury cars, 14 luxury watches, medals, shares held in four companies and a significant amount of money in various currencies and cryptocurrencies, estimated to more than US$0.5 million.

The trial has yet to be scheduled since the judge has 60 days to study the case files prior to the trial.

The accused brothers, however, blamed politics, claiming that the case against them is politically motivated.

“Even former prosecutors, former judges in Romania have claimed that the Tate brothers’ case is politically motivated to destroy their influence and steal their wealth,” they commented on their Tate News twitter channel.

They also warned that even if they go to court, “it won’t be a fair trial.”

OCCRP and its Romanian partner RISE released an investigation less than a month ago that revealed Andrew and Tristan Tate were involved in a profit-sharing deal with a casino company whose owners are now being investigated for creating a violent organized crime group.

Andrew Tate even bragged about it before to the brothers’ arrest in Romania in December 2022 on human trafficking and rape charges.

The investigation cited one of the most striking Tate’s brags – that he was working with unnamed Romanian gambling kingpins to operate casinos in the Eastern European country, where Tate has chosen to base himself because, he has said, it’s a place where “corruption is accessible to everybody.”

He also claimed in multiple interviews to have partnered up with some “brothers, mafia guys,” who owned “400 [gambling] locations from Estonia all the way down to the East of Europe,” and to have helped his new partners push competitors out of business.