As a result of a joint enforcement operation carried out by Milton Keynes Council’s Taxi Enforcement team and Thames Valley Police, on |Friday a a Daventry Hackney Carriage driver was convicted at Milton Keynes Magistrates Court of picking up passengers illegally (blagging) in May this year.
Adnan Ali Qureshi of Cliftonville Court, Northampton attended court and pleaded guilty to plying for hire and driving without valid motor insurance. Mr Qureshi was fined £400 for plying for hire and £440 for invalid motor insurance.
He was also given 6 DVLA penalty points and has to pay costs of £1060, with a victim surcharge of £44.
Hackney Carriage vehicles licensed by Daventry District Council can only pick up passengers in Milton Keynes by prior appointment only – and if a driver stops to pick up passengers on the street without pre-booking it also invalidates their car insurance.
The Court heard how on the weekend of May 7/8 2016 enforcement officers, acting as members of the public, engaged the driver on a journey which had not been pre-booked from one location to another in Milton Keynes.
At the completion of this journey taxi enforcement officers from MK Council and officers from Thames Valley Police were waiting. Investigations by the officers showed that the driver did not have a booking from the location he was caught plying from.
Milton Keynes Council and Thames Valley Police have on-going concerns over the public’s use of out of town vehicles that have not been booked in advance. Out of town vehicles can only pick up people who have pre-booked the vehicle. In case of an accident, neither the driver nor the passenger would be covered by insurance.
When enforcing taxi legislation, the Council’s main priority is the safety of the travelling public and other road users.
“Licensed drivers are in a position of trust and members of the public expect that anyone driving a licensed vehicle has the correct licence and insurance to do so,” said Cllr Mick Legg, the Cabinet Member responsible for taxi licensing policy.
“These operations by Milton Keynes Council will continue and shall hopefully minimise, if not eliminate, those drivers carrying out illegal activities within Milton Keynes.”