Council wins court battle against multiple private hire drivers caught illegally plying for hire 

Updated: Dec 5, 2019

Oxford City Council’s Licensing Team has had a string of successes in the courts protecting the public from unsafe and unsuitable drivers.

In early November, in Oxford Magistrates Court, Karol Grzyb of Toot Hill Butts, Headington was found guilty of unlawfully plying for hire in Oxford, whilst operating his private hire vehicle, which was licensed by another authority.

Mr Grzyb was fined £483 and was also ordered to pay £300 costs and a £23 victim surcharge for unlawful plying for hire, as well as £200 with six points on his licence for using a motor vehicle without insurance.

The Council has applied for costs of £650. Mr Grzyb has a right to appeal. The Judge was satisfied that Mr Grzyb had failed to stop as a deliberate attempt to avoid detection.

She had considered imposing a DVLA disqualification due to the aggravating circumstance and danger of this but had instead imposed penalty points as Mr Grzyb would also be subject to disciplinary action by the taxi licensing authority, Vale of White Horse District Council.

On the same date, Oxford licensed driver Mohammed Hammou of John Buchan Road, Oxford lost an appeal against the Council’s revocation of his Private Hire Driver licence, which was removed due to his conviction at Magistrate Court on 13 May.

Mr Hammou was found guilty and fined £480 for unlawful plying for hire, and £170 with six points on his licence for using a motor vehicle without insurance.

On 13 November, Lutfur Rahman, of Wood Farm Road, lost his appeal against the Council's refusal to grant him a Private Hire licence.

The Court was satisfied that Mr Rahman was not a fit and proper person to hold a licence as he has a 'long and very poor licence record'. His failure to disclose convictions was also significant and deliberate.

Ian Wright, Oxford City Council’s Head of Regulatory Services and Community Safety, said: “It’s important that the public have confidence that when they use a taxi, it is fully licensed, legal and safe.

"In the run up to Christmas more and more of us will be calling on the services of taxis and private hire vehicles when we go out at night.

"The City Council wants to reassure residents that we will crack down on unlawful trade with the powers that are available to us, as these cases show.”

Image credit: Pixabay

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