*Trigger warning - article contains mention of rape and human trafficking*

Andrew Tate has appeared in a 'combative' interview with the BBC but who is the influencer?

The British American social media personality, 36, gained a large online following for expressing his controversial and 'misogynistic' views before being banned from the likes of TikTok, Instagram and Youtube.

The former professional kickboxer was arrested in Romania last December alongside his brother Tristian and two women with all four being suspected of human trafficking and forming an organised crime group.

The Northern Echo: Who s Andrew Tate? (Vadim Ghirda/AP)Who s Andrew Tate? (Vadim Ghirda/AP) (Image: Vadim Ghirda/AP)

The controversial influencer sat down with the public broadcaster in his first major interview since he was released into house arrest from police custody in Romania in April.

Tate, 36, denied all allegations that he has raped, trafficked or exploited women for money with the statement "absolutely not" to all three of the BBC's questions.

The influencer reportedly agreed to the BBC's interview with no set conditions despite repeatedly expressing his mistrust of the traditional media on multiple occasions. 

Described as 'combative' by the BBC, the interview saw BBC journalist Lucy Williamson challenge Tate's on whether his controversial views on women harmed young people.

To which the influencer claimed that he was a "force for good" and that he was "acting under the instruction of God to do good things".

During the interview, Tate also dismissed the testimonies of individual women that are involved in the current investigation who have accused him of rape and exploitation.

The social media personality's interview comes after the BBC interviewed 'Sophie' - a pseudonym used to protect her identity - on Radio 4's File on Four.

In the interview, the woman revealed that she had followed Tate to Romania believing he was in love with her.

When she arrived, she reported that she was pressured into webcam work and into having Tate's name tattooed on her body.

Sophie is now helping Romanian prosecutors with the investigation

Meanwhile, Tate claims in the interview that the BBC 'invented' Sophie.

Tate first attracted wider attention after he appeared on the reality TV series Big Brother in 2016.

However, he was removed from the programme following his controversial comments on social media.

Following his exit from the reality show, he started to offer paid courses and memberships through his website - which many have accused him of using to fuel a culture of misogyny.