Uber reportedly hired a powerful lawyer to appeal against its London ban

Thomas de la MareBlackstone ChambersBarrister Thomas de la Mare.

Uber has hired barrister Thomas de la Mare to lead the appeal against its ban in London, The Telegraph reports.

The San Francisco taxi-hailing giant, which found out on Friday that regulator Transport for London (TfL) was not going to renew its licence, has also hired law firm Hogan Lovells, according to the report.

Uber has worked with de la Mare before. Earlier this year he helped Uber to convince courts that two of three new TfL restrictions were unlawful. Uber and de la Mare did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

TfL wanted drivers to be insured for private hire even when they weren’t taking passengers from A to B. The transport regulator also wanted Uber to introduce a complaints telephone line. Both of these restrictions were thrown out but a compulsory English language test for drivers test was not.

Transport for London (TfL) announced last Friday that Uber would not be issued with a private hire operator’s licence once its current licence is up on 30 September.

TfL said Uber was not “fit and proper” to hold a licence, adding that the firm’s approach to reporting serious driver offences, approach to driver medical and safety checks, and use of its secret “Greyball” software to dodge transport officials all contributed to its decision.

Uber said it would challenge TfL’s the decision in court. The company has also launched a petition calling on Mayor of London Sadiq Khan to reverse TfL’s decision. The petition had received over 634,000 signatures on Sunday.

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