London’s black cab drivers in High Court challenge against Uber

Mark Johnson's picture

London’s famous black cab drivers are challenging Uber's temporary operating licence in London, claiming the judge that granted it was 'biased'.   

The United Cabbies Group Ltd (UCG), which represents Hackney Carriage Drivers in the capital, has made the complaint against Chief Magistrate Emma Arbuthnot, the Daily Mail reported.

The group claims that the judge who granted Uber a 15-month permit in June was 'tainted by actual or apparent bias' when she granted the licence because her husband, Lord Arbuthnot, is alleged to have financial connections to the taxi firm.    

Uber, the global cab hailing app service, was handed its temporary licence at Westminster Magistrates' Court in June last year after Transport for London (TfL) refused to renew it citing safety concerns.

At a hearing in London on Wednesday, lawyers for UCG acknowledged the judge was unaware of any such links but said she should have 'checked for any potential conflicts of interest' before making her decision on Uber's licence the Mail reported.

The cabbies legal representatives also argued that the decision was not open to her because Uber did not meet the 'fit and proper person' criteria necessary for holding a licence, the Mail reported.

The group posted on its Twitter feed that it was taking the next step to ensure its future: "Morning everyone, today we take the next step to regaining what’s ours. We always wanted them in court, so let’s focus on the next target, TFL. We’re putting them on notice that they messed with our great trade and we will not take it lying down. We’re coming for you."

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UTAG goes after Uber

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