Bolton Council has secured fines for a number of taxi drivers found to be illegally picking up passengers in the town centre.
During operations carried out by the council’s trading standards team in November and December 2016, a number of private hire drivers were caught accepting passengers who had not made a private hire booking.
Some of these drivers have subsequently appeared in court in July 2017 for plying for hire without a licence and using a vehicle without insurance for that purpose.
Mazam Hussain, Charanjit Singh, Mudassar Ahmed, Ryan Wong and Zafar Khan were all found guilty of plying for hire and sentenced £130 and £440.
They were also all found guilty of using a vehicle without insurance for that purpose and fined between £130 and £440 each with 8 points on their licence. Each driver was also fined costs of £500 and victim surcharge of between £31 and £44.
Councillor Nick Peel, Executive Cabinet Member for Environmental Services said:
“It is important to remind both drivers and members of the public that private hire vehicles must only be booked through the operator. They cannot be flagged down in the same way as licensed hackney carriages.
Customers should be aware of the safety implications, as many passengers will not realise that if a private hire vehicle is not booked through an operator, it may not be licensed and may not be covered by an insurance policy should an accident occur.
We hope that these fines serve as a warning to other drivers, all of whom should be fully aware that this is illegal.”