News Criminal Defence 28th Nov 2018

Sophia Dower Successfully Appeals Against TFL’s Decision to Revoke Uber Driver’s Private Hire Licence

Sophia Dower was instructed in an appeal against Transport for London to the City of London Magistrates Court in relation to the revocation of her client’s private hire driver’s licence.

Mr A was a driver for Uber for approximately two years before he was permanently suspended by the company in March 2018. A complaint had been made by a passenger to the police in June 2017 alleging that Mr A had inappropriately touched her and made comments of a sexual nature towards her. In March 2018, a wholescale safety review was conducted by Uber and the company decided to permanently suspend Mr A’s account with them as a result of this earlier complaint.  Uber notified TFL of Mr A’s suspension which then triggered TFL to conduct their own review of Mr A’s case. This resulted in TFL immediately suspending Mr A’s licence on public safety grounds. In addition to the police complaint, there were a further 16 complaints against Mr A involving dishonesty, inappropriate conversations and poor quality of driving. TFL subsequently revoked Mr A’s licence in light of these complaints.

Mr A appealed to the Magistrates Court against this revocation and Sophia Dower successfully argued that TFL had been wrong to revoke Mr A’s licence. It was submitted to the Court that despite the large number and seriousness of the complaints, they were evidentially weak, unreliable and lacking in sufficient detail to warrant the revocation of Mr A’s licence.

The Magistrates agreed that little weight could be attached to the complaints in their current form and therefore allowed Mr A’s appeal.

Sophia Dower was instructed by Caines Law.

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