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Rogue Swansea taxi drivers in court threat

11/06/2013

South Wales Evening Post
Jun 11th, 2013

http://m.thisissouthwales.co.uk/story.html?aid=19249741

ROGUE taxi drivers who ply for trade without a licence have been warned by Swansea Council they will face court action if they are caught.

The warning came after a fare picked up by local private hire driver Wayne Gibbs in the city centre last year ended up costing him almost £1,000 in fines and costs.

Private hire drivers are only allowed to take fares from customers who pre-book journeys whereas cabbies in hackney carriages are also allowed to pick up people from the roadside when flagged down and at designated ranks.

June Burtonshaw, cabinet member for place, said: “All private hire drivers know the rules and the potential consequences of breaking them.

“In this particular case the fare Mr Gibbs picked were council enforcement officers on duty in the city centre and now he has paid the price. It should be a warning to others that this kind of behaviour won’t be tolerated in Swansea.

“The rules are in place to protect the public.”

Mr Gibbs, appeared before Swansea Magistrates last month and was found guilty of plying for hire without a licence under the Town Police Clauses Act 1847 and driving without insurance contrary to Section 143 of the Road Traffic Act 1988.

Both offences occurred on Sunday, July 15 and at the time he was working as a private hire driver for Cwmbwrla Cabs.

Mr Gibbs was fined £300 and given seven penalty points for driving without insurance and fined a further £150 for plying for hire without a licence. He was ordered to pay £500 costs and a victim surcharge of £30.

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