Birmingham & Black Country

Sandwell indecent assault cabbie to keep licence

Black cab Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Individual councils are free to decide who they consider "fit and proper" to drive both Hackney Carriages and private hire cabs

A taxi driver jailed for indecently assaulting a child has been told he can continue working.

According to a meeting's minutes, Sandwell councillors allowed the man to carry on driving after seeking legal advice and considering his character and driving record.

The minutes, from a licensing sub committee, were made public after a meeting held in private last month.

Sandwell Council said it reviewed "each case on its merits".

The Local Democracy Reporter service said minutes of the meeting refer to the driver as 'Mr S G' and exclude any information which identifies him.

Image copyright Google
Image caption Councillors allowed the driver to keep his licence due to his good driving record and character

It said, in November 1999, he was convicted of indecent assault on a female under 14 and jailed for three months by Warley Magistrates.

The minutes show that after adjourning to take legal advice, councillors allowed him to keep his licence "due to the length of time that had lapsed since the conviction, his good driving record and good character."

In its handbook for councillors, the Local Government Association advises not to issue a licence if an applicant has a previous conviction for a sexual offence.

Councils are free to decide who they consider to be "fit and proper" drivers.

Sandwell Council said it knew of Mr S.G's indecent assault conviction when it originally issued him a licence in 2007.

But its October 2017 licensing policy requires holders who committed a serious offence in the past appear before the committee to consider whether it should be revoked, where each case is considered individually.

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