Western Australia takes legal action against Uber

​Just months after targeting Uber drivers, the Western Australia government is taking legal action against the ride-sharing app developer directly for not having the correct licence to operate in the state.

Legal action is being taken against ride-share company Uber for not having the right licence to operate in Western Australia.

The state's Transport Minister Dean Nalder said the government had filed the first prosecution "to do with UberX and ride sharing without having a licence".

"And there are many more to come in coming weeks," Nalder told ABC radio.

Uber launched in Perth in May last year, with Nalder at the time calling on his department to check whether the taxi app was in compliance with the law.

The move to take legal action against Uber directly comes after dozens of people involved with the Uber ride-sharing service were reportedly targeted by the Western Australia Department of Transport for operating unlicensed taxi services in Perth.

WA Department of Transport's general manager of passenger services Aaron De Rozario said at the time that it had issued notices for financial and contractual documents to gather evidence for a potential prosecution of the individuals.

Uber has faced regulatory scrutiny in many of the markets in which it operates globally, including China, India, and Taiwan, as well as Australia, while its drivers in many regions have been issued with fines for contravening local public transport regulation and legislation.

The California-based company has made a habit of paying for its drivers' fines in some markets, in order for them to continue driving without bearing the brunt of punitive action taken by local regulators.

In January, the New South Wales Roads and Maritime Services began issuing court attendance notifications to Uber drivers within the company's Sydney footprint.

As of January, in Sydney, UberX drivers had been issued with at least AU$28,500 worth of fines by the NSW Roads and Maritime Service, while as of May last year, more than AU$50,000 worth of fines had been issued to UberX drivers in Victoria.

With AAP

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