Wednesday, February 03, 2016

Violent Minicab Tout Deported After Attack On Taxi Driver.

   Justice finally catches up with violent minicab tout.

An illegal minicab tout who dodged deportation for ten years is finally being booted out of the country for attacking a black cab driver, the Old Bailey heard yesterday. 

Lounes Khalfi, 53, spat at cabbie Paul Griffin-Ahamed and punched him in the face for taking his picture while touting for business outside a West End casino. 

He then threatened another black cab driver, Andrew Donovan, who had witnessed the attack, claiming his friends would 'f*** you up'. 

After his arrest, it emerged Khalfi should have been deported as long ago as 2004 after a conviction for fleecing tourists, but blundering officials allowed him to stay.

In 2013 Khalfi was arrested again by British Transport Police, a spokesman said Khalfi, who lived in Essex, had been charging “extortionate rates”.

For many years, Khalfi had “preyed” on tourists around Camden high street and had also been banned from eight London rail stations for five years.

Lounes Khalfi, 50, was given an Asbo in 2013, which barred him from approaching members of the public outside stations, including Euston, King’s Cross, St Pancras and Marylebone. But it made little difference to Khalfi who just moved into the West End where he thought he would have little chance of being caught touting.

Khalfi operated as a tout outside clubs and casinos in the West End, undetected by compliance if the police and probably would have still been operating there today, had he not used violence against a couple of licensed Taxi drivers who filmed him at work.

Presently in London's west end, a minicab tout has more chance of winning the lottery, then being arrested for touting. TfL's answer to the increase in touting reports is to double the team of compliance officers who have no powers other than to report suspected incidents. Compliance teams rarely go out on patrol, looking fir touts. Their main duties are normally limited to Badge and Bill checks on Taxi drivers at station ranks. Operation Neon officers who seem to only concentrate on PH parking offences only go out Friday and Saturday.

Just before Christmas, ex top cop Chief Superintendent Matt Bell resigned as head of compliance after just a few months. No statement has been made by TfL to the reason why Matt quit. It's a shame because Matt Bell was approachable and for just a few months, things certainly improved as visual action was being taken against the touts.

Because of the lack of enforcement, touts outside night venues have become more aggressive with reports of assaults on Taxi drivers common.



Veritas said...

He will return no doubt, claim he's an asylum seeker then apply for a PH licence and as he's an asylum seeker TfL won't ask for any kind of 'certificate of good conduct' however worthless.

So TfL exactly how many PH drivers are out there who have use the asylum seeker/refugees 'exemption'?

It seems Mr Bell was too effective to remain.

Back to the old old call for a public enquiry into TfL, cable car, Garden bridge, bike scheme, PH safeguards, engagement policy, political interference, mega salaries the list is getting pretty big.

Anonymous said...

Love it, 5 years ago when some people were calling for a Public Enquiry into TFL - the trade didnt didn't get it and pooled resources to back a GLA led enquiry. Warned that the GLA are powerless, nobody listened. Find it ironic that a Public Enquiry is being called for. Typical of the London cab trade, always five years to late in challenging anything. Zzzzzz

Anonymous said...

The guy who was attacked is a great friend of mine , I agree that this guy deserves punishments that he got , but please don't think that all Phv drivers are criminal asylum seekers that claim benefits and cheat the system, I hear black cabbies talk about the price of a black cab, my car cost me £78,000 £1545 per month repayments , I am a Phv driver and have been for 20 years, ( ps and I don't work for Uber ) anyway all I wanted to say is when we renew our Phv licences we have to go through the same checks as a black cab driver CRB , medical , and so on, all the company's that I work for demand that my paperwork is up to date, and will not give me work until I take my updated documents to the office. Thanks

I'm Spartacus said...

Anon. 3.31

You will find that the editor, myself RMT, UCG, Suburban Coalition, Semtex, Simco and many others have been calling for a proper public enquiry for longer than 5 years,

'No need, we have the inside track at TfL', said others.

I will leave you to judge how successful that tactic has been.

Anonymous said...

I will leave you to judge how successful that tactic has been.

One word, CALAMITY!