An Uber driver in Perth could be the first in Australia prosecuted for not having a taxi licence

Taxi driver Keith Williams protests outside of City Hall in Chicago. Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images

A Uber driver is being prosecuted in Perth for taking fares without having a taxi licence.

The legal action under the Taxi Act of 1994 was launched by the Western Australian Government after several months of investigation.

The action, believed to be the first in Australia to target a driver for Uber, is not against the ride-sharing company itself but against an individual. A court date has not been set.

Hundreds of taxi drivers planned a protest against Uber today in Perth organised by the Transport Workers Union.

Transport Minister Dean Nalder said there will be more prosecutions in the next few weeks.

“It is an offence to carry fare-paying passengers in a vehicle that is not appropriately licensed,” he said.

However, he has also asked the department for a green paper on the options for the taxi industry where reform is needed.

“On the one hand we have individuals carrying fare-paying passengers in a vehicle that is not properly licensed,” he said.

“And on the other hand we have the view that the taxi industry – like all industries – should be open to competition.”

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