Published Friday, 27th October 2017

A court has supported a decision from Reigate & Banstead Borough Council to revoke a taxi driver’s licence which resulted from an allegation about the driver by one of his female passengers.

The court also ordered the driver to pay costs of £4,500.

Reigate & Banstead Borough Council, which licenses private hire drivers in the borough, revoked Mr Shahid Tafader’s licence in November 2016 because of an allegation of an inappropriate conversation of a sexual nature with a lone female passenger. Mr Tafader of Hyperion Walk, Horley, then appealed to the Council to review its decision but his appeal was not successful.

Court endorsed decision

“We expect taxi drivers licensed by Reigate & Banstead Borough Council to meet high standards of behaviour. Mr Tafader’s behaviour fell far short of those standards so revoking his licence was the right thing to do,” said Councillor Graham Knight, Reigate & Banstead Borough Council’s Executive Member for Community Safety and Enforcement. “We are extremely pleased that the courts endorsed our decision at each stage. Passengers should feel confident that they are safe in taxis licensed by this council.”

Costs of £4,500

After Reigate & Banstead rejected Mr Tafader’s appeal against its decision, he took his case first to Redhill Magistrates, where the court heard evidence both from the Council and the passenger involved, and then to Guildford Crown Court but his appeals were rejected at both stages. As well as supporting the council’s decision to revoke Mr Tafader’s licence, Guilford Crown Court ordered Mr Tafader to pay Council costs of £4,500 in addition to £700 cost already imposed by Redhill Magistrates.

Reigate & Banstead revoked Mr Tafader’s licence on the grounds that he was not a fit and proper person under section 61 of the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976.