A taxi driver from Thame has been fined £500 and issued with six penalty points after using an unlicensed and uninsured vehicle for private hire.
Tye Edwards, 40, of Cromwell Avenue, pleaded guilty to operating a private hire vehicle without a valid licence and using a vehicle without insurance during an appearance at Oxford Magistrates Court.
Magistrates heard how in September 2016, Edwards, trading as KML Cars, was stopped by police on the M25.
Edwards, who was transporting passengers at the time, had failed to display a private hire vehicle plate.
An expired plate, found hidden under a jacket inside the vehicle, revealed that his licence had ended ten months earlier.
Further enquiries revealed that Edwards’ vehicle had also failed a roadworthiness test in March 2016 meaning that he was operating the vehicle unlawfully and his insurance was therefore invalid.
The passengers were being taken to Heathrow and the private hire journey had been booked through their travel agent – with both parties believing that the vehicle was legitimate.
Margaret Reed, head of legal and democratic services at South Oxfordshire District Council said: “Taxi drivers are responsible for ensuring their vehicles are on the road legally.
“This was a serious case where someone was charging people to ride in an unlicensed, uninsured and unroadworthy vehicle.
“This was potentially very dangerous for the passengers and other road users.
“We would also urge anyone using a private hire or hackney carriage vehicle to check that it has a valid licence plate before they get into the vehicle.”