Council crackdown on ‘bogus’ cabbies

An example of a registration plate that can be found on a taxi licensed by North Devon Council.

An example of a registration plate that can be found on a taxi licensed by North Devon Council. - Credit: Archant

Some unlicensed taxi drivers are using Facebook to pick up fares, claim council.

COUNCIL bosses say they will prosecute unlicensed taxi drivers who illegally promote their services on Facebook.

North Devon Council is urging people to double-check that the taxi and private hire services they use are licensed, after being made aware of claims that some bogus cabbies had been using social media to pick up fares.

Councillor Joe Tucker, chairman of the council’s licensing committee, said: “Drivers who pick up fares without themselves being licensed or having their vehicles licensed are committing criminal offences.

“It’s unfair to other legitimate drivers and what’s more, if they take a payment for a journey and subsequently have an accident, their insurance could be invalidated, costing them money and potentially landing them in court.”

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The council said it needed people to come forward with evidence so that action could be taken.

Lead licensing officer Katy Nicholls, said: “People who pay for rides in unlicensed cars are putting themselves at risk, with these drivers also unlikely to have been security checked.

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“If anyone comes across cases on social media, where they suspect a driver doesn’t hold the right licences, I would urge them to report cases, get screen grabs of their Facebook or Twitter posts and pass them on to us.”

People can check that the taxi they use is licensed by making sure there is a licence plate on the back of the vehicle. Drivers should also have an official badge.

To report cases of unlicensed activity, call 01271 388870 or email

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