Just one day after igniting a Twitter feud with 19-year-old climate activist Greta Thunberg, British-American far-right media personality and kickboxer Andrew Tate was detained by Romanian officials in connection with allegations of human trafficking and rape.
Tate had previously been banned from various social media platforms for expressing misogynistic views and hate speech
As reported by Reuters, Tate, 36, and his brother Tristan Tate will be detained for 24 hours along with two suspects after a raid in Bucharest. Prosecutors in Romania claim the Tate brothers and the two others “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,” according to a statement obtained by Reuters.
The Tates’ lawyer confirmed the brothers’ detainment, though he declined to comment. Several outlets, including BBC News, report both Tate brothers have been under investigation regarding the allegations since April.
As previously mentioned, it’s been a busy week for Andrew Tate. It began with a Twitter war between Swedish activist Thunberg and Tate.
The divisive commentator, whose presence has been banned from a variety of social channels, took the first shot at Thunberg after tweeting a photo captioned, “Hello @GretaThunberg, I have 33 cars. This is just the start. Please provide your email address so I can send a complete list of my car collection and their respective enormous emissions.”
Thunberg replied in kind, saying: “Yes, please do enlighten me. Email me at smalld—firstname.lastname@example.org.”
Tate later replied to a suggestion that he and the teenaged Thunberg “just [have sex] already” by saying, “She ain’t ready.” The comment, given Thunberg’s age, was criticized.
Back in October, Buzzfeed News reported on Tate’s so-called “Hustlers University 2.0,” a series of virtual courses which, according to Tate, aimed to help users “escape the Matrix.” The $50-per month course of lessons via a Discord channel included financial, career and dating advice (including a now-removed “Pimpin Hoe Degree”). Buzzfeed News reported that some individual courses were priced at $500 each.
Romanian prosecutors said they found six women who’d been sexually exploited by the suspects, according to Reuters. As reported by the Guardian, Tate was previously banned from Twitter for saying women “bear some responsibility” for being raped.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.