BUCHAREST (RockedBuzz via Reuters) – Social media personality Andrew Tate was transferred to house arrest late Friday evening after a Romanian court overturned prosecutors’ requests to hold him in police custody until the end of April.
Tate, his brother Tristan and two Romanian suspects have been in police detention since December 29 as prosecutors investigate them on suspicion of human trafficking, rape and forming a criminal gang to sexually exploit women.
They denied all allegations.
“We consider the court’s decision legal, complete and fair,” Tate’s attorney Eugen Vidineac told reporters.
He said the brothers were forbidden from contacting witnesses and leaving the house without approval from the authorities. “We still don’t have the court’s motivation, we don’t know if there are other disqualifications”.
“I’ve been in a room since last year so it’s a bit exciting,” Tate told supporters gathered outside the house on Friday.
“I strongly believe justice will be served eventually. There is a zero percent chance of me being found guilty of something I didn’t do. I maintain my absolute innocence.”
Earlier this week, the same appeals court in Bucharest denied nL8N3615I2 the Tate brothers’ request to be released on bail.
In previous rulings that extended their stay in police custody, judges said the Tate brothers posed a flight risk and their release could jeopardize the investigation.
“The (court) decision is final, the investigation continues,” Ramona Bolla, a spokeswoman for Romania’s organized crime unit DIICOT, told RockedBuzz via Reuters.
Asked whether Friday’s ruling would speed up the investigation, Bolla said prosecutors have until the end of June to refer the suspects to trial.
Under Romanian law, prosecutors have filed charges against the four suspects, but the case is still under investigation and has not been tried.
Prosecutors said the Tate brothers recruited nL4N34F3ZH their alleged victims by seducing them and falsely claiming they wanted a relationship or marriage. The victims were then forced to produce pornographic content for social media sites which resulted in a large financial gain.
Tate, who has resided primarily in Romania since 2017, is an online influencer and self-described misogynist who has built a following of millions of fans, particularly among young men attracted to his hyper-macho image.
(Reporting by Luiza Ilie and Alan Charlish; Editing by Jonathan Oatis, Giles Elgood, Josie Kao and Emelia Sithole-Matarise)