Posted on: February 13, 2023, 01:29h.
Last updated on: February 13, 2023, 02:09h.
The arrest in late December of the controversial social media personality Andrew Tate on charges of human trafficking and rape has generated much interest in the source of his wealth. This includes his claims that he owns 15 casinos in Romania in partnership with the local mafia.
Tate, a British-American ex-champion kickboxer, has been called “the King of Toxic Masculinity” for multiple comments espousing misogyny, including that women should “bear responsibility” for being raped.
Nevertheless, “Top G,” as he likes to be known, has legions of impressionably young male followers who aspire to his ultra-masculine gangsta lifestyle, boasting more than 4.5 million followers on Twitter.
On December 30, the influencer was arrested in Bucharest, Romania, along with his younger brother, Tristan, and two Romanian citizens, for trafficking women into his adult webcam business under threat of violence. The Tates deny the charges.
Tate has said he moved to Romania because “corruption is far more accessible,” and it’s easier to evade rape charges there than in the West.
Tate’s webcam business has been well documented, mainly by himself in his “Hustler University” videos, where he offers “business” tips on how to groom women for the porn industry. But his involvement with casinos is far sketchier.
“The story is there were three brothers, mafia guys, who owned 400 casinos throughout eastern Europe,” Tate says in one of his videos.
I came up with this plan, I went to them … ‘I’ll pay to open locations, so it costs you no money to be involved. I’ll give you a percentage of turnover, not profit,’” he added. “‘So even if it makes no money, you’re making money because it’s pure turnover. And I’ll open up directly next door to your number-one competitor in Romania. So, I’m going to go to war for you with my money.’”
Putting aside, for a moment, the fact that Tate perhaps unwisely publicly outed his business partners as mafia, it’s unclear exactly which casinos Tate owns and why he hasn’t used his social media reach to publicize them.
Tate has claimed to own 15 casinos that collectively make him $1 million per month.
In a 2020 “Tate Confidential” video, the brothers are seen entering a casino, which appears to be part of Romania’s Las Vegas Games chain. Feeding money into the slots, Tate observes, “Because we own half of these places, we get half our money back.”
“We’ve opened some [expletive] casinos in partnership with one of the biggest and best brands in this whole country,” explained Tristan later in the video.
Investigative digging by The Guardian has unearthed no evidence that Tate owns any casinos in Romania other than a “weak historical link” to a chain that operates arcade gaming machines. Since 2018, Las Vegas Games appears to be owned by an Armenian group.
Love him or hate him – and there really is no middle ground here – many of Tate’s claims should be taken with a pinch of salt since he isn’t shy of making grandiose and highly suspect boasts about his wealth. After all, this is a man who claimed on a Twitch stream with Adin Ross, without apparent hyperbole, to being the “world’s first trillionaire.”
Should Tate’s case ultimately go to trial, prosecutors may shed more light on the real scope of his wealth and his business interests in Romania.