A councillor has spoken out after a taxi driver was stopped in Cherwell for road tax offences and fraud offences.

The unlicensed taxi driver, Aamer Aziz, has received a custodial sentence for the offences following a council prosecution.

At a hearing at Oxford Crown Court on Friday, February 3, the Wolverhampton based Mr Aziz was sentenced to four months imprisonment suspended for two years, 100 hours unpaid work, a six-month driving ban, 36 days rehabilitation activities, and £500 costs after pleading guilty to three offences during prosecution at Oxford Magistrates’ Court in December 2022.

READ MORE: Anonymous Bicester artists cheer people up with knitwork

The defendant pleaded guilty to using a motor vehicle without third party insurance, driving as a private hire driver without a licence and fraud by false representation after being investigated by Cherwell District Council.

Councillor Eddie Reeves, Portfolio Holder for Safer Communities, said: “Taxi drivers form an important part of the community, allowing many residents to stay connected to friends, family, local businesses and vital services.

“Local people and visitors rightly expect for these services to be safe and correctly licensed and thanks to the due diligence of local companies, drivers and the council, they are.

“This case highlights that in the rare instances drivers or companies do not comply to regulations and standards we will ensure they are prosecuted in accordance with the law.”

In 2022, Mr Aziz was stopped by Thames Valley Police while in the Cherwell area for road tax offences.

After his vehicle was stopped further offences related to the vehicle’s Hackney licence plate and private hire advertising were noted and sent to Cherwell District Council’s licensing department.

Following an investigation, it was found that Mr Aziz had made a false rear Bromsgrove taxi licence plate and had falsely represented himself, and his taxi as being correctly licensed.

A couple of years ago three taxi drivers in Banbury and Bicester had their licences suspended.

The licenses were suspended as part of an operation designed to keep members of the public safe on festive nights out.

Cherwell District Council and Thames Valley Police carried out 38 checks on taxis in the two towns to ensure they were following the conditions of their licences.

The suspensions were for a non-roadworthy tyre, incorrect display of a licence plate and a missing roof light.

The operation was part of the Departure Zone campaign which advises revellers how to stay safe while out on the town, addressing topics such as illegal tobacco, drinks spiking, and the dangers of underage drinking.

Council licensing officers checked vehicles' plates matched drivers' registration documents, while ensuring the latter were up to date.


Read more from this author

This story was written by Matthew Norman, he joined the team in 2022 as a Facebook community reporter.

Matthew covers Bicester and focuses on finding stories from diverse communities.

Get in touch with him by emailing: Matthew.norman@newsquest.co.uk

Follow him on Twitter: @OxMailMattN1