Barcelona taxi drivers to lodge legal case against Uber

Barcelona taxi drivers took strike action in January
Barcelona taxi drivers took strike action in January

A Barcelona-based association of taxi drivers on Thursday announced it would lodge a legal complaint against ride-hailing services Uber and Cabify for fraud and other offences.

In all the Elite Taxi group, which represents 2,000 , will take on 11 firms and 15 individuals, as well as US-based Uber and Spanish company Cabify, according to Alberto Alvarez, spokesman for the association.

The legal complaint, to be lodged in Madrid next week, is just the latest attempt by registered taxi drivers in several countries to stop using the new, less regulated, services which they believe provide .

The accusations will include fraud but also money-laundering, tax infringements and flouting workers' rights.

Rideshare companies maintain that drivers are able to thrive and maintain work flexibility, and that their business model would not work if drivers were treated as wage-based employees.

In late 2017, the Elite Taxi association obtained a judicial victory when the European Court of Justice ruled that Uber is an ordinary transportation company instead of just an online app and should be regulated as such.

Last year Spanish went on strike for several days, calling in the authorities to restrain the activities of the ride-hailing operators.

In several Spanish cities, including Valencia and Barcelona, new rules have been adopted including requiring customers of ride-hailing services to book a ride at least 15 minutes in advance.

© 2019 AFP

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