Press Release from Helen Chapman

Helen Chapman, Deputy Director of London Taxi & Private Hire, said:

“Touting in London is a significant issue. As far as we are concerned there was clear evidence that this company did not operate this private hire service in line with their clear legal obligations and we are naturally disappointed with the outcome. We will not sit by and watch such operators work outside of the legal framework that they are required to work within. Working with the Police, TfL will continue to fully investigate any reports of illegal activity and together we will pursue perpetrators with the full force of the law.

Touting puts the travelling public at risk and undermines the legitimate and law abiding taxi and private hire trades.”

Additional information

· Licensed private hire operators within shared or late night venues are only permitted to take bookings inside the premises. Bookings taken on-street, even in a roped off area are illegal.

· In 2010 TfL undertook a consultation on a range of private hire matters. As a result, a number of new policies are being introduced, with particular focus on additional measures to ensure tighter control on private hire operators within shared or late night venues.

· Since 2003 the Cab Enforcement Unit has made more than 7,000 arrests for touting and cab-related offences;

· Cab Enforcement operations are carried out on a regular basis in line with current intelligence on touting and illegal activity. They also cooperate with clubs to crackdown on the touts who operate in the area and ensure compliance with regulations and importantly enhance the safety of the travelling public;

· Licensed and law abiding taxi and private hire drivers and members of the public often have valuable intelligence that is used to inform both the Safer Transport Command’s and TfL’s enforcement activities to deal with touting and other illegal cab activity. It is for this reason, that we have recently developed an online reporting form to make it easier to report issues and we would encourage members of the public and drivers to report issues to us.

· For more information on cab enforcement activities or to report touting issues using the new online form visit: www.tfl.gov.uk/cabenforcement