Back in September Taxi driver and prominent LCDC member Tony Casey, shared his fears that somebody "could be killed" as Taxi drivers were being targeted by a prolific mugging gang from Lisson Grove.
Tony, who has been driving a black cab in London since the 1980s, says the attacks which are becoming too commonplace have spread to other parts of central London and have become more worrying as violence is now being used towards drivers.
But Tony didn't just leave it there.
He made an appointment to see PC Kelly who is attached to the staff office of Borough Commander of Havering. The officer put Tony in contact with the Met sergeant in charge of neighbourhood policing for the Maida Vale and Little Venice Areas (Sergeant Scott Barden Marshall), who explained to Tony, that his unit is keen to get this sorted.
Sergeant Marshall said to Tony he knows he needs to do a great job here and stressed that so far, is going better than he first anticipated.
After the recent outcry on social media, we've now received news that the issue has now been taken on by the 'Robbery And Gangs Unit' who have been directed to look into these serious crimes against Taxi drivers.
In an interview with the unit, Tony insisted that its only a matter of time before these attacks include fare paying passengers, and now the issue has started to gathered pace.
Gangs are targeting taxi drivers for their takings and their phones. This includes brazen attempts to stop the cabs in the street, and even trying to get drivers to help disabled people get into the Taxi, only to rob them when they step out of the cab. Tweets also say a driver was attacked with a fire extinguisher. One driver on the rank at Marylebone Station was threatened with acid.
Tony said: "For the last few years, licensed cab drivers have been robbed while driving through Lisson Grove and now it's expanding to the West End and Knightsbridge. It’s no joke. Somebody, either a taxi driver or one of the gang members, could be killed."
This extract below from the Ham and High, regarding the robberies:
Alex Workman has been driving a taxi for 11 years, and lives in Lisson Grove. He has seen the aftermath of many street robberies.
"I picked up a group in Praed Street," he said. "When they all piled in, they said: ‘Can you pick up my friend’s bag on the way?’"
When Alex’s cab pulled up, the youths picked up a bag from the street. He quickly realised they had a driver’s money bag.
"I told them to get out, and they dropped the bag on the way. When I checked, it was empty. A woman came up and said she’d seen a taxi driver being robbed."
The 37-year-old says some taxi drivers are no longer carrying cash bags to minimise the risk of being robbed. He told us he fears for his safety.
"Myself, and other drivers know who these people are.
It would be an easy problem to tackle, but they would have to get a police presence in the area. I don’t have much confidence in the police full stop. I don’t blame individual officers, I put blame directly at the door of commissioner Cressida Dick.
"Like a lot of visible crime at the moment, you need visible officers. It’s not about taking DNA or doing stuff behind computer screens, it’s about getting boots on the ground."