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AN UNLICENSED private hire driver, who was found to be illegally dropping off fares in Reading, has been hit with financial penalties of more than £900 and given eight penalty points on his licence.
Tassawar Nawaz, of Brybur Close, Reading, was found to be operating a private hire vehicle without a licence, in a controlled district, and without the correct insurance.
In July 2022, Mr Nawaz was approached by two Reading Council licensing officers, after he was seen dropping off two passengers on a taxi rank at Reading Station.
At Reading Magistrates Court on Friday 17 February 2023, Mr Nawaz was found guilty and ordered to pay a total of £982 in financial penalties, including a £690 fine, and a £92 victim surcharge. Eight penalty points were also added to Mr Nawaz’s driving licence.
Reading Council licensing officers have stressed the dangers of using unlicensed private hire vehicles. Residents are advised to always ensure that the private hire or hackney carriage licence plate is visible before beginning their journey.
They are also reminded not to be tempted by convenience, availability, or a cheap fare, as unlicensed drivers have no safeguards in place, both for the individuals, and for their journey.
Councillor Tony Page, Reading’s Lead Councillor for Climate Strategy and Transport, said:
“This is another great result from the Council’s licensing team, who work hard to ensure regulations are in force to protect Reading’s travelling public.
“I sincerely hope the outcome of this case will serve to further deter any drivers from contravening the law. Such illegal activity will not be tolerated and our team of licensing officers will continue to maintain their vigilant enforcement activities.”