Addison Lee Boss John Griffin 'Could Face Prosecution' After Telling Drivers To Use Bus Lanes

The Huffington Post UK  |  By Posted: Updated: 22/05/2012 10:11

Addison Lee Splash

The boss of taxi firm Addison Lee could be prosecuted after he urged his drivers to illegally use bus lanes in London.

Chairman John Griffin sent a letter to his drivers in April calling for them to use the lanes, which are meant for cyclists, buses and licensed black cabs.

The 69-year-old said the current rules were discriminatory towards minicabs and "unfair."

Now, according to a letter sent the head of the all party parliamentary group on cycling Ian Austin MP, the Met have passed on the letter to the authorities.

The Met's commander for safer transport Adrian Hanstock told the Labour MP Griffin's letter had been passed to the police after TfL asked them to consider if there were "any offences" in it.

"Griffin's letter has been passed to the Crown Prosecution Service for consideration and the MPS are awaiting the outcome of this legal advice. I will send you an update once that advice has been considered," he wrote.

Labour MP Austin said in a statement: “John Griffin might think he is funny, but the police clearly take a different view and given the number of cyclists killed and injured, many people will think it is dangerous and irresponsible for someone in his position to encourage conflict on the roads and tell his drivers to ignore the rules.”

Following a High Court application by Transport for London in April, Addison Lee was instructed not to repeat the offer to pay fines or to encourage drivers to use bus lanes.

Griffin, chief of one of Britain's largest cab firms, recently caused outrage after claiming that cyclists injured on London roads are to blame for their own accidents.

He also accused cyclists of being irresponsible as they "leap onto a vehicle which offers them no protection except a padded plastic hat".

An Addison Lee spokesperson said they have withdrawn the letter, telling the Evening Standard: “It is my understanding that TfL referred [the letter] to the police who referred it to the CPS. We’ve heard nothing back from that. We have withdrawn the letter and have had the judicial review of the bus lanes law brought forward to June, so it has been a success from our point of view.

“The drivers are all self-employed. They don’t have to go through anything special to terminate their contract. It was clear in the letter that it was up to the driver whether they drove in the bus lane and that if the passenger told the driver they didn’t want to use the bus lane, they didn’t have to go in them.”

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