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One of Cambridgeshire council’s 1,628 licensed taxi drivers loses appeal

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A taxi driver has lost his licence after South Cambridgeshire District Council successfully defended an appeal in court.

27-year-old Humayun Ahmed from Derwent Close in Cambridge appeared before the council’s licensing appeals subcommittee in August 2022.

This came after Mr Ahmed notified the council that he had been convicted of driving without due care and attention, whilst not on duty as a taxi driver, and fined £630.

The conviction originated from when he was issued with a fine in August 2019 for speeding. This would have resulted in three points on his personal driving licence and a £100 fine.

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However, Mr Ahmed did not pay the fine and the matter escalated into legal proceedings.

Then, in October 2020, the council received a complaint that Mr Ahmed’s private hire vehicle was breaching licence conditions by not having both the operator and council-issued door signs on show on his taxi whilst he was working. This is mandatory so private hire vehicles, which must be pre-booked with an operator, can be easily identified.

The council told Mr Ahmed to rectify this immediately, which he did.

Later, in April 2022, Mr Ahmed notified the council that he had been convicted of a speeding offence.

For this, he was handed a further five penalty points on his personal driving licence. This meant that he had accrued a total of 14 points on his driving licence.

Drivers are banned from driving if they receive 12 or more penalty points.

As a result of these offences, South Cambridgeshire District Council’s licensing subcommittee revoked his private hire driver licence – preventing him from working as a taxi driver.

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Mr Ahmed appealed the council’s decision.

The appeal was heard at Cambridge Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday 19 July.

The lead magistrate stated that they had to ensure the safety of the public and felt that Mr Ahmed’s behaviour had fallen short of that expected of a professional driver.

The court therefore determined that Mr Ahmed was not a fit and proper person to hold a taxi licence and dismissed the appeal, awarding the council £150 in costs.

South Cambridgeshire District Council’s Lead Cabinet member for licensing, Cllr Henry Batchelor, said: “The vast majority of South Cambridgeshire’s taxi drivers offer a professional service.

“They are relied on by many residents of our rural communities on a regular basis and the South Cambridgeshire taxi trade overall has an excellent reputation.

“However, we won’t hesitate to act if a driver’s behaviour falls short. This case shows that actions when a taxi driver is off duty can still have serious ramifications for their taxi licence.

“Holding a licence of this sort is a privilege and means the public put their trust and safety in these drivers.”

South Cambridgeshire District Council has 1,628 licensed taxi drivers and 107 licensed taxi operators.

Report an issue with a South Cambridgeshire District Council-licensed driver or operator at www.scambs.gov.uk/licensing/taxi-licences

 

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