A private hire driver has been forced to pay £1,000 after illegally plying for hire in Reading last year.
Alyas Mahmood, 45, of Greathill Crescent, Maidenhead, became the second taxi driver successfully prosecuted at Reading Magistrates’ Court this month for illegally plying for hire in Reading, Berkshire.
The licensed private hire driver from Windsor and Maidenhead, was spotted by Reading Borough Council officers in Friar Street plying for trade at 12.38am on Sunday, December 17.
Mahmood falsely displayed a taxi roof sign and failed to display a Private Hire Vehicle badge or plate while parked in a Reading Hackney Carriage taxi rank.
He pleaded guilty at court on Friday, June 8, and was ordered to pay fines totalling £600, a £30 victim surcharge and £340 in legal costs.
Private hire drivers are only allowed to pick up fares booked in advance.
Councillor Tony Page, lead member for strategic environment, planning and transport, said:
“Thanks to the hard work of the council’s licensing team, we are sending out the message this kind of behaviour will not be tolerated.
“I hope both these prosecutions serve as a deterrent to drivers who are tempted to work illegally and opportunistically in Reading.”
The council’s licensing team carries out test purchases and spot checks to ensure drivers and vehicles meet the council’s standards and adhere to current taxi legislation.