Andrew Tate: Romanian court rules trial of influencer accused of human trafficking can go ahead

The trial of Andrew Tate, the social media influencer accused of human trafficking, rape, and forming a criminal gang to sexually exploit women, can go ahead, a court in Romania has said.

Friday's ruling by a court in Bucharest comes almost 10 months since he and his brother Tristan were first charged - and can be appealed.

The Bucharest Tribunal said that the prosecutors' case file against Tate met the legal criteria but did not set a date for the trial to begin.

One of the brothers' lawyers, Eugen Vidineac, said the court's decision "lacks legal basis and reasoning" and has filed an appeal.

The 37-year-old influencer was arrested in December 2022 near the Romanian capital along with his brother and two Romanian women.

The four were charged in June last year. The siblings deny all the allegations against them.

Read more: Who is Andrew Tate, the self-styled 'king of toxic masculinity'?

The pair, who live in Romania, were first arrested in a property in Bucharest in December 2022 and held in custody until March 2023 when they were released under house arrest.

Under Romanian law, the Bucharest court's preliminary chamber needed to inspect the case files and evidence to ensure legality. With that process completed, the criminal trial can start.

In March, a Romanian court approved a request from Britain to extradite the Tate brothers on allegations of sexual
aggression dating back to 2012-15, but only after the completion of Romanian trial proceedings.

The Tate brothers are both former kickboxers with dual US and British citizenship.

Romanian prosecutors have said they recruited their victims by seducing them and falsely claiming to want a relationship or marriage.

The victims were then taken to properties outside the city, and through physical violence and mental intimidation were sexually exploited by being forced to produce pornographic content for social media sites that generated large sums of money, prosecutors said.

Tate gained millions of fans by promoting an ultra-masculine lifestyle that critics say denigrates women, though he has denied holding misogynistic views.