Unlicensed cabbies caught touting for business in Wilmslow

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Two Stockport taxi drivers who were touting for business in Wilmslow have been caught in a joint operation involving Cheshire East Council's enforcement team and Cheshire police.

Plain-clothes police officers posed as customers to catch the private hire drivers who were plying for business at the roadside in Wilmslow town centre. As they did not have a licence to operate in Cheshire East, they were in breach of private hire regulations.

The two drivers, who were licensed with Stockport council, agreed to take their passengers, not knowing they were undercover police. Once they set off, they were intercepted by a marked police car.

Cheshire East Council's licensing team successfully prosecuted the two operators when they came before South Cheshire Magistrates at Crewe on separate dates.

Both were convicted of plying for hire without a licence for the borough in which they were operating. They were also convicted of driving without insurance.

One driver – Monjur Ahmed (42), of Wilton Avenue, Heald Green, Stockport, pleaded guilty and was fined £180 with £150 costs. He also received six penalty points on his driver's licence and could now face having his operator's licence revoked by Stockport Council.

The second driver, Mohammed Perveg Ahmed (39), of Outwood Road, Heald Green, was fined £500 with £2,000 costs. He received eight penalty points on his driver's licence. He also faces losing his operator's licence.

Monjur Ahmed was parked outside a petrol station in Alderley Road and the other driver was parked outside Starbucks.

Councillor Mick Warren, Cheshire East Council cabinet member for communities, said: "I thank our licensing team and Cheshire police for conducting this operation and bringing about successful convictions in both cases.

"This sends a message to all taxi operators that we are an enforcing authority and we will prosecute where taxi operators try to pick up fares in Cheshire East when not licensed to do so.

"Not only do they put their own business at risk but they also invalidate their own insurance – and that places their passengers at risk too, should an accident occur."

Police joined forces with the council's enforcement team in 'Operation Magpie' and intend to carry out further swoops on unlicensed cabbies in the future in a bid to clamp down on the unlawful practice and protect residents and visitors to the borough.

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Comments

Here's what readers have had to say so far. Why not add your thoughts below.

Mark Russell
Monday 28th September 2020 at 4:35 pm
Is this really a priority now? Sounds like the cast of Ben hurr to catch two taxi drivers, who are licensed just not in this area. No suggestion they were looking to kid nap lone women etc.

How about we put all this resource into sorting the parking problem? Something that effects everyone in the town.
Rick Andrews
Monday 28th September 2020 at 5:45 pm
Taxi driver operating out of licensed area is not insured so Mr Russell you could Use a taxi and be in a crash and find you have no recourse for injury claim or damage. That’s why.
Mark Russell
Tuesday 29th September 2020 at 8:06 am
I think you’ll find they are third party fire and theft. The law changed a few years ago. So I would be insured.
David Smith
Tuesday 29th September 2020 at 10:13 am
MARK RUSSELL:
It is Ben-Hur, the 1959 film starring Charlton Heston, and not Ben hurr.
It is also 'KIDNAP' meaning 'to carry off (a person) against that person's will' and not KID NAP - which literally means to 'deceive someone into having a short period of sleep'.

Car insurance for third party, fire & theft [TPFT} it will state somewhere in the small print/conditions whether you can use the cover in connection with a business and may only use it for 'Social Domestic and Pleasure Purposes' and NOT for 'hiring, the letting on hire, the carriage of passengers or goods for hire or reward, racing, pacemaking, use on any track, test circuit or off road activity, use in any contest, reliability or speed trial, or use in connection with the Motor trade.' Well at least that is what my motor insurance policy states and I have copied exactly the words in single quotation marks from my existing policy.
So if these taxi drivers were operating under their own insurance I am certain there would be no cover in an accident.
It states that they were operating without insurance, which could mean not even the standard insurance that we all must have - even the TPFT that you suggest!
So can you check on your facts again and correct what might appear to most of the readers as more DUFF GEN!
Gillian Slater
Tuesday 29th September 2020 at 6:53 pm
Well done Cheshire East and Cheshire Police. These culprits are taking business from businesses with a licence and who have passed stringent checks to be granted a licence. Also park where no one else allowed and on residential streets overnight disturbing the residents by open and closing the car doors overnight by getting out for a piddle or smoke etc. Also seen them parking on pavement.
Gillian Slater
Tuesday 29th September 2020 at 9:09 pm
David Smith all your comments are irrelevant IMO. See above.
Mark Russell
Wednesday 30th September 2020 at 12:10 pm
David I assume you are an English teacher? I apologise for my in correct spelling but you need to take a chill pill and get something to do with your time.

It is now illegal for insurance companies to not offer cover if the driver has paid the agreed rate. It was being used as ways for them to get out of paying out. So if a driver is fully comp, the minimum he will get is third party fire and theft even if , for example, he has no mot. You have fallen into a common mistake made by people who don’t have the knowledge.

I promise to read a dictionary if you promise to read something on a subject you clearly don’t understand
Simon Rodrigues
Wednesday 30th September 2020 at 2:23 pm
I cant believe some people would think that this is not great police work. Outstanding protecting people from many of things that can go wrong unbeknown to the individual thank you and great police work.
Paul Maddock
Wednesday 30th September 2020 at 2:44 pm
2 drivers from Stockport - licenced by a neighbouring authority, both living within a mile or two of Cheshire east border...... not so very far outside their area, yet still illegal so well done.
However..... why is almost every cab I see in and around Wilmslow is licenced in WOLVERHAMPTON and not Macclesfield / Cheshire? Is it not time these cabs were also fined for operating outside their licensed area, or is it allowed that a cab licensed over 50 miles away is allowed to operate as long as the company they supposedly work for is licensed in Cheshire East?
Simon Rodrigues
Wednesday 30th September 2020 at 5:44 pm
I cant believe some people would think that this is not great police work. Outstanding protecting people from many of things that can go wrong unbeknown to the individual thank you and great police work.
Jon Williams
Wednesday 30th September 2020 at 6:56 pm
There are two main types of vehicle that we can license for public hire:

Private Hire – with this licence, you can only work from private hire operators base
Hackney Carriage – with this licence you can work from the town’s taxi ranks and be hailed on the street. Hackney carriages can also work through a private hire operator
For private hire or hackney carriage work, both the driver and vehicle must be licensed. A driver of the vehicle may also need an operator’s licence if they are taking private hire bookings directly.
Mark Russell
Friday 2nd October 2020 at 11:26 am
@simon. I never said it’s not great police work. My comment was on how much resource was thrown at this for two collars. And hardly crime of the century?! At a time where our roads are being used as a race track, lots of people driving around on their phones, not to mention stupid parking everywhere my point was can’t we sort the issues everyone is interested in. Two cabbies being a bit naughty is hardly top of my to do list for the police, and I’d doubt it is for anyone really?
Gillian Slater
Saturday 3rd October 2020 at 2:39 am
Mark Russell it isn't 'two cabbies' operating in this manner, they are only two caught. They can be seen all over the place , on the pavements , sainsburys council car parks without paying and spoke to one yesterday he said oh yes I work for Cheshire blatantly displaying a Stockport licence plate
Ian Hughes
Tuesday 6th October 2020 at 4:07 pm
Private Eye has a spoof message board. This is almost as funny! Well done.
Stockport cabbies getting out of their cars for a piddle and a smoke is priceless.
Gillian Slater
Thursday 8th October 2020 at 7:56 am
Ian Hughes. I live on Parkway. Would you like them outside your house awakening you at 3/4 am as you are fast asleep as they go about their illegal business. Time for some maturity from certain commentators !
Gillian Slater
Thursday 8th October 2020 at 8:03 am
Wilmslow and surrounding areas are trying their best to get and keep business going in Wilmslow. How are these uber and Lynx parking in the areas where shoppers park. In the street one hour and/or Sainsburys car park for free.
Please let me know how your flippant attitude and comments are helping get Wilmslow back on its feet?
David Smith
Sunday 11th October 2020 at 9:56 am
Please can you have a re-read of your last comment and then post it again to make sense. I do not understand what you are trying to say.
I would suggest to everyone that they slowly and deliberately read over what they have written before pressing the SUBMIT button. This way we all might have better comments from those who wish to say something!
It is a good idea to write you comment in a word document first where it can be spell & grammar checked for errors that you might not have noticed. Then you can copy and paste it into the comment box before submitting.

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