Former kickboxer Andrew Tate says Romanian prosecutors have no evidence against him

Former kickboxer Andrew Tate says Romanian prosecutors have no evidence against him
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BUCHAREST, Jan 25 (Reuters) – Divisive internet personality Andrew Tate said on Wednesday that there was no justice in Romania and that the file against him in a criminal investigation into alleged human trafficking and rape was empty.

Tate, his brother Tristan and two Romanian suspects have been with the police. custody since December 29 pending an ongoing criminal investigation on charges of forming a criminal gang to sexually exploit women, accusations they deny.

On Thursday, a Romanian court extended their detention until February 2, 27. Prosecutors have said the Tate brothers recruited their victims by seducing them and falsely claiming they wanted a relationship or marriage.

The victims were then taken to properties on the outskirts of the capital, Bucharest, and through physical violence and mental intimidation they were sexually exploited by being forced to produce pornographic content for social media sites that generated large financial gains, prosecutors said.

They also said that Andrew Tate, a former professional boxer who has US and British nationality, raped one of the victims in March last year, which he has denied.

“They know we haven’t done anything wrong,” Tate told reporters when organized crime prosecutors brought him in for further questioning, the first comments to the media since his arrest. “This file is completely empty. Of course it is unfair, unfortunately there is no justice in Romania.”

Andrew Tate and his brother Tristan are escorted by police officers in front of the Bucharest Court of Appeal headquarters, in Bucharest, Romania, January 10, 2023. Inquam Photos/Octav Ganea via REUTERS

Asked if he had hurt women, Tate said: “Of course not.”

Earlier this month, the Romanian authorities said they had attorney goods and money worth 18 million lei ($3.99 million), including luxury cars and property as part of the investigation.

“There is no evidence against me,” Tristan Tate told reporters on Wednesday. “The authorities plan to steal my cars and steal my money. That’s why I’m in jail.”

Prosecutors have said the seizure was aimed at preventing the assets from being hidden.

The Tates “trust the defense, they trust the evidence in their favour, they have given a detailed statement, they have collaborated (with the authorities),” their lawyer Eugen Vidineac told reporters after questioning.

“We think the defense is starting to take shape.”

Andrew Tate gained mainstream notoriety for his misogynistic comments that got him banned from all major social media platforms, though his Twitter account was reinstated in November after the social network was acquired by Elon Musk.

Reporting by Luiza Ilie and Octav Ganea; Edited by Nick Macfie and Daniel Wallis

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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