Two licensed drivers have been prosecuted as part of an ongoing partnership between Derby City Council and Derbyshire Police to tackle illegal plying for hire in the city.
Fawad Ahmad and Gulfraz Ahmed were both sentenced at Southern Derbyshire Magistrates after they were caught plying for hire in Derby City Centre.
On the 10th of March this year, Mr Ahmed picked up two passengers on the Morledge and agreed to take them to a destination despite the passengers having not pre-booked the vehicle. As a private hire driver, Mr Ahmed could only accept journeys where passengers have pre-booked through the operator.
Appearing in court on the 22nd August, Mr Ahmed pleaded guilty to the offence and received a £100 fine, told to pay £429 in costs and a £30 victim surcharge.
During a similar operation in November 2017, Fawad Ahmad picked up two passengers at the taxi rank by the Assembly Rooms and was subsequently stopped on London Road by a Roads Policing Officer. Mr Ahmad was licensed by Rossendale Council at the time of the offence. Again, Mr Ahmad’s passengers had not pre-booked the private hire vehicle and he shouldn’t have accepted the passengers.
Despite pleading not guilty to the offence of plying for hire, Mr Ahmed was found guilty at a Southern Derbyshire Magistrate Court hearing on the 13th of September. He received a £225 fine, £300 costs and a £30 victim surcharge.
Councillor Mick Barker, cabinet member for Governance and Licensing commented:
“The Council takes the offence of plying for hire very seriously and we will take action against persons found in breach of the regulation. I hope that these two prosecutions send out a clear message that plying for hire will not be tolerated in Derby.”
Top taxi safety tips
- Only get into a private hire car if you have pre-booked it
- Before getting in, check that the private hire licence plate is displayed on the rear of the vehicle, next to the registration plate. Private hire vehicles should also have livery on them displaying the operators details
- You can request that the operator sends a Derby City Council licenced driver
- If you have any concerns at all about a vehicle or a driver, make a note of the licence number, licencing authority and the vehicle registration and email it to firstname.lastname@example.org
For more information and advice, visit the Derby City Council website.