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81 taxi drivers held for breaking laws

Taxi drivers refusing passengers and failing to use meters for fares are caught on Thursday morning during a crackdown on cabbies taking advantage of Thai and foreign tourists. (Supplied photo via Wassayos Ngamkham)

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Eighty-one taxi drivers were caught for violating the vehicles law and refusing passengers as police stepped up a crackdown on public transport drivers taking advantage of foreign and Thai passengers in areas around the Grand Palace on Thursday morning.

Tourist police, officers from Phra Ratchawang and Chana Songkhram police stations were involved in the joint crackdown operation.

Pol Lt Gen Terapon Kuptanond, commissioner of the Tourist Police Bureau, who led the operation, said many Thai and foreign tourists had lodged complaints with the Land Transport Department about public transport drivers, particularly taxi and tuk-tuk drivers, for allegedly refusing passengers, overcharging and in the case of taxis, refusing to use meters for fares. The offences often occurred around the Grand Palace, the main tourist attraction.

During the operation, a total of 81 taxi drivers were arrested. Of them, 55 were found to have violated the Vehicles Act, 25 refused to pick up passengers and one driver failed to use a taxi meter for fares.  

Over the past year, the TPB had coordinated with agencies to crack down on land transport law offenders. A total of 12,585 offenders had been caught — 3,810 taxi drivers for refusing passengers, 3,435 for failing to use taxi meters, 1,759 for parking in prohibited areas, 663 for dressing inappropriately and the rest for other offences.

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Vocabulary:

crackdown : strong action that someone in authority takes to stop a particular activity - การใช้กำลังเข้าปราบปรามของเจ้าหน้าที่

inappropriately : unsuitably , not appropriately - ซึ่งไม่เหมาะสม

lodge a complaint : to make a formal statement to someone in authority that someone has done something wrong - ยื่นคำร้อง

offender : a person who is guilty of a crime - ผู้กระทำความผิด

operation : a planned activity involving a lot of people, especially soldiers or police officers - การปฏิบัติการ

overcharge (verb): to ask for too much money for the product or service you are selling - คิดเงินแพงเกินไป

refuse (verb): to say or show that you will not do something; to say or show that you will not do something that someone has asked you to do - ปฏิเสธ

violate : to do something that is against a law, rule or agreement - ฝ่าฝืน, ละเมิด

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