Illegal Cabbie Incident Highlights Airport Hustling Of Unsuspecting Victims

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — New concerns about illegal cabbies have popped up following a Tuesday night incident involving a group of a tourists from Panama.

CBS 2 sent an employee into Terminal 4 at John F. Kennedy Airport Wednesday with a small camera. Seasoned travelers said they are hustled by illegal livery drivers quite frequently.

“You always see them waiting for people to come out — people who don’t speak English that they can con,” Jeannie Stiles said.

Tuesday night, 37-year-old livery driver Bhupinder Singh offered a family a ride, which was illegal. Not knowing, they got in.

Right after the car pulled away, Port Authority officers in an unmarked car tried to pull it over.

Police had been watching Singh, who had been busted five times at JFK. When police tried to stop him, Singh allegedly trapped the family in the car. With police in pursuit, 17-year-old Aldo Sosa, who was in the front seat, grabbed the steering wheel and the car eventually crashed into a guard rail.

Once the car crashed, Singh was arrested. However, the question remains: Why isn’t there more enforcement against such drivers?

“You’d need a whole army, at this point, to respond to this issue,” Port Authority spokesman Al Della Fave told CBS 2’s John Slattery.

The Port Authority says enforcement must be undercover, away from uniformed cops

“The difficulty with enforcement is you have to observe it, you have to hear him solicit the individuals,” Fave said.

The Port Authority tries to warn travelers with signs and announcements, but there’s so much money to be made — two to three times the normal fare — that hustlers simply can’t resist.

Last year, at JFK alone, there were 402 arrests for similar hustling.

Have you ever been hustled by an illegal cabbie?  Tell us in the comments section below…

Comments

One Comment

  1. Bullett says:

    Was the gypsy cab driver (Bhupinder Singh) injured in the accident? If not he should work on getting a new face or hire out for horror films.

  2. Retired 44 says:

    Don’t buy the excuse “You’d need a whole army, at this point, to respond to this issue,” . Nonsense!, put enough undercover cops at certain arrival terminals continuously, and the arrest rate will grow. The fines should be increased to a point that will discourage these drivers from breaking the law. What about confiscating their vehicles for repeat offenders… Unlicensed NYC Gypsy car operators are the wost drivers and will stop at nothing at flouting the law.

  3. PERSAUD says:

    THERE IS ALOT OF CAB STAND EMPLOYED GYPSY CAB IN RICHMOND HILL AREA THE TLC NEED TO BE MORE SERIOUS ON THEY CAB STAND WITH BIG FINE OR TAKE AWAY THE CAB STAND LIENCE .

  4. PETE says:

    It is not the Hustlers, it is the lazy cops who, if they ever do something, only concentrate on the drivers, waiting on the side for their arriving friends or relatives, wishing to save on the ridiculously high parking fees. The cops are not working for the public but for the Parking lot owners. There is no time left to catch the quite obvious and in the open Hustlers.

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