A Romanian appeals court has upheld a decision last month to extend Andrew Tate’s detention, meaning the former kickboxer, influencer and professed misogynist will remain in preventive custody until at least 27 February.
Tate, 36, his brother Tristan, 34, and two Romanian female suspects, one a former police officer, were arrested in December on suspicion of human trafficking, rape and forming an organised crime group to exploit women. All have denied wrongdoing.
Last month a judge extended their detention until the end of February, citing “the capacity … of the defendants to exercise permanent psychological control over their victims, including by resorting to constant acts of violence”.
That decision was upheld by the Bucharest court of appeal on Wednesday after a brief hearing for which the Tate brothers arrived in a police van handcuffed together, with Andrew proclaiming his innocence to waiting reporters. Neither has yet been charged.
The brothers’ US legal adviser, Tina Glandian, who has previously represented the boxer Mike Tyson and the singers Chris Brown and Ke$ha, argued that their detention without charge for more than 30 days violated their international human rights.
Tate, a dual US-British citizen, was thrown off the UK version of Big Brother in 2016 and became notorious for his misogynistic remarks and hate speech. He has said women are partially responsible for being raped and that they “belong” to men.
After amassing millions of followers on social media, prompting fears that his videos were radicalising young men, he was eventually banned from all major platforms. In November he was reinstated on Twitter – where his account has 4.7 million followers – after Elon Musk’s acquisition of the company.
Prosecutors launched their investigation last March after one of the brothers allegedly raped a trafficked woman. The brothers are accused of recruiting their victims by seducing them and falsely claiming to want a romantic relationship.
The victims were then allegedly taken to properties outside Bucharest where they were forced “through physical violence, mental intimidation and coercion” to produce pornographic content for social media sites, generating large profits.
The prosecution has so far identified six victims, including minors. The two Romanian women in custody, Georgiana Naghel and Alexandra Luana Radu, are suspected of having acted as the brothers’ accomplices.