Rushmoor Borough Council has successfully prosecuted an unlicensed taxi driver for trying to pick up a fare illegally in Farnborough.
Mohammad Salam (72), of Moorland Road, Aldershot, was fined £60 and ordered to pay a victim surcharge of £34 when he appeared at Aldershot Magistrates Court on Friday, 9 December, after being convicted of acting as a hackney carriage driver without a licence. He was also ordered to pay £500 towards the council’s costs.
The court heard that on 13 July, Salam was caught plying for hire on the junction of Kingsmead and Eastmead in Farnborough and was reported to the council by a member of the public. He was traced after a note was made of his vehicle registration plate.
Salam, who denied the charge, told the court that using the word ‘taxi’ was a slip of the tongue as he used to be a taxi driver, and that he thought the member of the public was a friend.
Rushmoor Borough Council’s Cabinet member for Operational Services, Councillor Maurice Sheehan, said: “We hope these actions show that unlicensed drivers will be dealt with robustly by the council. Particularly at this time of year, when people have been out celebrating and drinking, we would encourage them to check the driver credentials, which should be on display in the cab and shown on the licence plate. If in doubt don’t take the taxi and report anything suspicious to us.”
To report any suspicious drivers, members of the public should call 01252 398 855 or email: email@example.com
*The council has also revoked the private hire taxi licence of a 72-year-old man after concerns were raised about his conduct.
The man, who comes from the Southampton area, had been licensed with the council since September 2021 and had been working on school contracts.