TWO taxi drivers have been hit with large fines after illegally plying for hire in Reading.
Mohammed Shahjhan Hussain, aged 37, of Elizabeth way Basildon, who is an Uber driver licenced by Transport for London, was caught illegally plying for hire during Reading Festival on Friday 26th August 2016.
Mr Hussain appeared at Reading Magistrates Court on Friday 10th March 2017, where he pleaded guilty and was ordered to pay a fine of £533 and costs £1,000.
West Berkshire licenced driver, Sayed Mahmoud, aged 34, of Richmond Avenue Thatcham, was also caught illegally plying for hire during Reading Festival on Friday 26th August 2016.
He also appeared at Reading Magistrates Court on Friday 10th March 2017, where he pleaded guilty and was ordered to pay a fine of £130 and costs £200.
Council licensing officers carried out a number of test purchases during the Reading Festival weekend, which resulted in the identification of a number of drivers working illegally.
Cllr Paul Gittings, Reading’s Lead Member for Consumer Services, said:
“These are two more positive outcomes which uphold regulations that are in place to protect the public. I hope these prosecutions serve as a deterrent to drivers who are tempted to work illegally and opportunistically in Reading.”
Test purchases and spot checks are carried out to protect the public by ensuring drivers and vehicles meet the standards set by Reading Borough Council and current taxi legislation.
These cases follow another other recent successful prosecution relating to the Reading Festival. In February 2017, Aldin Stefanov, also an Uber licensed by Transport for London, pleaded guilty to plying for hire during Reading Festival and was fined £250, ordered to pay legal costs of £400 and a victim surcharge of £30.