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Taxi driver fined for abandoning blind couple because they had a guide dog

Date Posted: 11:29 AM on Thu, 12 January 2023

Taxi driver found guilty and fined for failing to fulfil a booking made by a disabled person due to the presence of an assistance dog.

Mr and Mrs Griffiths, both of whom are blind and residents of Arnold, had booked a taxi in July 2021. When the taxi arrived, the Griffiths were waiting on the pavement with their guide dogs. However, the vehicle turned around and drove off, leaving the couple stranded.

Despite pleading not guilty, Mr Anwar was convicted by a district judge after hearing evidence from Mr Griffiths' himself and considering evidence obtained from his phone and Uber which supported the prosecution's case. The judge ruled that the reason Mr Anwar failed to fulfil the booking was due to the presence of the guide dogs, not a flat tyre as Mr. Anwar claimed.

Mr Anwar was fined £288, ordered to pay a £34 victim surcharge and ordered to pay £100 in compensation to each of the Griffiths as well as a contribution of £500 towards the prosecution costs.

Portfolio Holder for Public Protection, Councillor David Ellis said:

"We are pleased with the court's decision to hold Mr Anwar accountable for his actions, this case serves as a reminder that discrimination against disabled individuals and their assistance animals is illegal and will not be tolerated. I would like to thank the Licencing Team for their sterling work in gathering the evidence to be able to prosecute the driver and I hope that Mr and Mrs Griffiths are not treated in this way ever again."