Controversial influencer and self-proclaimed misogynist Andrew Tate has reportedly been arrested in Romania in connection with a human trafficking investigation.
Tate, 36, and his brother Tristan, 34, were detained for 24 hours after authorities searched their luxury villa, according to a report by Antena 3, a Romanian news channel affiliated with CNN. The couple are being investigated as part of an investigation into an organized crime group that authorities say has been exploiting women for making pornographic videos.
In a press release Thursday, the Directorate for the Investigation of Organized Crime and Terrorism (DIICOT) said officers had conducted five separate house searches. The Romanian agency reported that four suspects, two from Britain and two from Romania, are accused of forming the group. Andrew Tate and his brother were born in Chicago, Illinois, but both have British citizenship.
Tate’s arrest was announced a day after an exchange between Tate and 19-year-old climate activist Greta Thunberg went viral on Twitter. Tate, who was recently reinstated on the platform by Twitter CEO Elon Musk, started the conversation by tweeting the young activist about his list of luxury cars.
“Please include your email address so I can send you a complete list of my car collection and their respective huge emissions,” Tate said wrote.
“Yes, please enlighten me,” said Thunberg wrote about a day later back. “Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.”
Thunberg’s response blew up on Twitter on Wednesday, drawing praise from several users for removing Tate’s tweet.
On Thursday, Twitter users speculated that authorities may have been assisting in Tate’s arrest thanks to a video he filmed in response to Thunberg’s comeback. Tate posted a two-minute video response to his account about 10 hours after Thunberg’s tweet, which shows the influencer in a Versace bathrobe and smoking a cigar.
About a minute into Tate’s monologue, an off-camera person hands him a stack of pizza boxes from Romanian restaurant Jerry’s Pizza, which some believe may have helped authorities track Tate.
“Romanian authorities needed proof that Andrew Tate was in the country so they reportedly used his social media posts,” a civil rights attorney tweeted Alejandra Caraballo, who posted a screenshot of Tate’s video from the day before. “His ridiculous video yesterday showed a pizza from a Romanian pizza chain, Jerry’s Pizza, which confirmed he was in the country.”
Other users mocked Tate for being arrested after being “possessed” by Thunberg the day before. star trek icon and activist George Takei tweeted that Romanian authorities were able to find Tate, “all because Greta Thunberg owned him so much his little pee fell off.”
“Am I right? Please say I have the right,” Takei added.
Associate Professor at Pepperdine University, Alice JessopShe also wrote about Tate’s imprisonment, tweeting: “Pride comes before a fall. Always.”
“If reports are true that authorities were led to him from an address on a pizza box in one of the videos, that’s just… the chef’s kiss,” she added.
It is currently unclear whether the pizza box actually helped lead Romanian authorities to Tate’s location. news week contacted DIICOT for more information.
Michael ThalenA tech reporter from the Daily Dot tweeted: “No evidence to date proves Andrew Tate was located based on his tweet showing a Romanian pizza box.”
“One Romanian newspaper simply said the police used social media posts to locate Tate,” the journalist said. “Tate had tweeted about being in Romania days before his interaction with Greta.”
Andrew and Tristan Tate were previously questioned by Romanian authorities in April after two young women were found at a villa in Voluntari, Romania, who allege the brothers forcibly kept them at the residence, authorities said, according to a report by the Romanian newspaper Freedom.
The outlet also reported that one of the women held US citizenship. The Tate siblings were reportedly questioned by DIICOT for five hours about the allegation.
In its publication on Thursday, DIICOT said the British suspects in the group were “recruiting” women by “misrepresenting their intention to enter into a marriage/cohabitation relationship and the existence of genuine feelings of love”.
The women were later transported to dormitories in Ilfov County, Romania, where “they were subjected to physical violence and psychological coercion… by group members for sexual exploitation, forcing them to perform pornographic demonstrations for the purpose of producing and distributing material from social media platforms,” reads the DIICOT publication.
Andrew Tate first garnered attention in 2016 after being kicked out of the UK version of the TV show Big Brother for a video that shows him appearing to hit a woman with a belt. Tate previously said the action was consensual.
In 2017, Tate was banned from Twitter after writing that some women “have to have some responsibility” when they are raped.
He was also banned from Instagram and Facebook this summer after the platforms’ parent company, Meta, called it a violation of its “dangerous people and entities” policy.
https://www.newsweek.com/andrew-tate-mocked-after-pizza-tweet-thunberg-may-have-led-arrest-1770278 Andrew Tate mocked after pizza tweet to Thunberg potentially led to arrest