The London Cab Drivers Club (LCDC) submitted a series of Freedom of Information requests’ to London Taxi and Private Hire(LTPH), Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) and the Metropolitan Police to try and find out the extend of touting that is committed by licensed and unlicensed private hire drivers in London but what we uncovered is truly shocking.
London Taxi and Private Hire Freedom of Information Request (LTPH)
“Can you inform us number of private hire driver that have had their licences revoked under the ‘one strike and out’ policy since its introduction in 2008.”
(LTPH FOI Reply)
The ‘One Strike and Out’ policy came in effect in August 2008 and the table below shows the number of revocations, suspensions, refusals and warnings for touting and related offences. PHV Driver
Revocations 2008/09. 64 2009/10. 212
2010/11. 314 2011/12. 236
Crown prosecution service Freedom of Information (CPS)
“Could you please inform me under the freedom of information act how many convictions for minicab touting there have been in the capital since 2008 to the present day please”
CPS, FOI Reply
The CPS does not centrally record data relating to convictions therefore I am unable to answer your question in it’s entirety; we do however record information relating to charges which I hope will go some way towards answering your request.
Please refer to the attached table which represents the total number of offences for ‘taxi touting’ under section 167 of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 broken down by CPS Area. This data represents the number of charged offences within the time period stated within your request; please bear in mind the caveats noted on the attached spreadsheet when reviewing this data set.
I am assuming that your reference to “in the capital” is intended to be a reference to London. In order to ascertain whether the defendant(s) was/were ultimately convicted of ‘taxi touting’ the CPS would need to recall and review each of the 3,918 criminal case files relating to charges in the London Area
London. 2008/ 1395. 2009/ 974. 2010/ 905. 2011/ 644.
= Total of mini-cab touts at the first stages of court from 2008/2011. 3,918
1. Offences recorded in the MIS Offences Universe are those which reached a hearing. There is no indication of final outcome or if the charged offence was the substantive charge at finalisation.
2. Data relates to the number of offences recorded in magistrates’ courts, in which a prosecution commenced, as recorded on the CMS
3. Offences data are not held by defendant or outcome
4. Offences recorded in the Offences Universe of the MIS are those which were charged at any time and reached at least one hearing. This offence will remain recorded whether or not that offence was proceeded with and there is no indication of final outcome or if the offence charged was the substantive offence at finalisation.
CPS data are available through its Case Management System (CMS) and associated Management Information System (MIS). The CPS collects data to assist in the effective management of its prosecution functions. The CPS does not collect data which constitutes official statistics as defined in the Statistics and Registration Service Act 2007. These data have been drawn from the CPS’s administrative IT system, which, as with any large scale recording system, is subject to possible errors with data entry and processing. The figures are provisional a subject to change as more information is recorded by the CPS
The official statistics relating to crime and policing are maintained by the Home Office and the official statistics relating to sentencing, criminal court proceedings, offenders brought to justice, the courts and the judiciary are maintained by the Ministry of Justice.nd subject to change as more information is recorded by the CPS.
Metropolitan Police Service response to our FOI request.
Freedom of Information Request Reference No: 2011110000862
I write in connection with your request for information which was received by the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) on 05/11/2011. I note you seek access to the following information:
Could you please tell me under the freedom of information act people have been convicted for touting since 2008 to the present day
Following receipt of your request searches were conducted within the MPS to locate information relevant to your request.
EXTENT OF SEARCHES TO LOCATE INFORMATION
To locate the information relevant to your request searches were conducted at the Performance Information Bureau.
RESULT OF SEARCHES
The searches failed to locate any information relevant to your request, therefore, the information you have requested is not held by the MPS.
The MPS does not hold data on convictions. Please may i suggest you contact the Crown Prosecution Service who may be able to assist you with the data you require. I have pasted the link below for your convenience
TFL’S Press Release war mini-cab touting in the capital.
The Mayor of London’s war against unlicensed Mini-cab has resulted in 1,300 arrests over the last 12 months in a crackdown on touting and other cab-related offences during 2010/11.
The latest figures show the success of the ongoing Safer Travel at Night (STaN) initiative, a partnership between the Mayor, Transport for London (TfL), Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) and the City of London Police (CoLP), who are working together to make travelling in London safer at night.
TFL’S Figures don’t add up.
Let’s have a look at totals of touts charged and reaching a first hearing in court from the (CPS) figures between 2010/11 amounts to 1,549,now if we look at the amount of Private Hire Drivers that had there license revoked under the one strike and you’re out rule for the same period of time of 2010/11 amounts to 550, and the Mayor of London war on unlicensed touts arrested in 2010/11 states that they have arrested is 1,300.
The first thing we noticed was that if we went by the (CPS) figures between 2010/11 a third of those arrested and reach their first hearing in court would appear to be Licensed Private Hire Drivers (LPHD) because if a (LPHD) is arrested for touting under TFL’s one strike and your out ruling they would have there licensed revoked and a total of 550 had their license revoked between 2010/11 from the figures obtain from (LTPH), was those Licensed Private Hire Drivers arrested for touting Illegally ranking up and plying for hire outside their satellite offices where they are licensed to work by (LTPH)?
What’s more alarming is that the total number of touts arrested year on year from 2008 to 2011 has dropped to under half from 1,395 in 2008 to just 644 in 2011 they might like us to think that they are doing such a great job and that the number touts that are touting in the capital has dropped so they can’t arrest them, or is it because they feel they are fighting a losing battle.
We printed a document in the badge that was taken from (LTPH) were they stated that touts are more clued up now .Touts know that if they are approached by a member of the public and are asked to take them home, they know they are not the police, because the police tout squad cannot make an arrest in this manner because it will be deemed in a court of law as entrapment, and the touts are fully aware of this
But what we have found most confusing is that if the (CPS) figures are only of touts charged that have made a first appearance in court is 1,549 and they don’t keep records past this, so how on earth have Transport for London (TFL) have come to a figure of 1,300 touts arrested between 2010/11 has stated in their Press Release, they can’t have obtained them from the (MPS) because you can see from their reply to our FOI request they don’t keep any such figures on how many touts are arrested , the (LTPH) only keep records of Licensed Private Hire Drivers found guilty because they have revoked their license, even if you took into account the 550 licensed private hire drivers arrested from the (LTPH) figures away from (CPS) figures of 1,449 it leaves 999 unlicensed touts arrested, but they can’t even go by these because no one keeps figures on convictions, have (TFL) got a separate set figures? Or are they just making the figures up to mislead the public by letting them think it’s safe to travel into London for a night out.
What other figures are they playing with ?
How many sexual assaults have there been in the capital ?
So it would appear in black and white that (TFL) are falsifying their tout arrest figures.
We are going to ask for a full investigation to be launched has to why all those involved in the Safer Travel at Night (STaN) Partnership are massaging the tout arrest figures and misleading the travelling public.