A judge has ruled that the defendants in a civil case Andrew and Tristan Tate filed against five people in a Florida federal court can proceed under a pseudonym, based on what the judge called “a risk of physical harm” to and “safety concerns” for all the defendants.
“The tenor of the online harassment directed toward the Defendants is such that…the presumption of disclosure must yield to the Defendants’ privacy and safety concerns,” the document reads.
The document confirms that the defendants in the civil case include two of the alleged victims in a Romanian criminal investigation into the Tate brothers. The Tates also included in the lawsuit one of the defendant’s parents and a U.S. Marine reserve who made the human trafficking report to the U.S. Embassy in Romania, setting off the criminal investigation.
The lawsuit, filed by the Tate brothers in July, alleged that the defendants committed defamation, false imprisonment, interference with a business relationship, civil conspiracy, negligent infliction of emotional distress, and intentional infliction of emotional distress. It seeks $5 million dollars in damage.
The order by the judge granting the defendants’ motion to proceed pseudonymously cites threatening messages against the defendants included in their argument, including an Instagram comment that says “Im getting a hitman,” a DM that says “Changing you[r] name won’t help, the world knows your name and what u are doing to innocent brothers, you’re gonna get what’s coming to you,” and a comment that says “we are on our way to pay a visit.”
In a filing on September 8th, the defendants asked to proceed pseudonymously in the lawsuit, calling the Tates’ lawsuit “part of an ongoing effort to influence public opinion as to the ongoing [Romanian] criminal case, and to further harass and traumatize these women.”
In that filing, lawyers for the defendants claimed that the Tates’ lawyer, Joseph McBride, posted a link on X to a Google Drive with personal information about the defendants, including their phone numbers, dates of birth, names of family members, and passport information.
Lawyers for the defendant also quoted a YouTube video Tate appeared in 2022 titled How to Destroy Haters, where Tate discussed the type of measures he’d take against people who criticized him online.
“I will sue you for any and every reason forever,” Tate said, according to the filing, “and you’re gonna have to hire lawyers and turn up for ever. I will do that. I’m that guy. I’m petty. I’m petty and I’ve got a lot of money and a lot of time…”