Amsterdam has been a leader when it comes to working with disruptors such as Airbnb and Uber. But it also doesn't put up with the type of nonsense Uber specializes in when it's trying to bend the rules.
Uber Technologies Inc.’s offices in Amsterdam were raided for the third time this year as Dutch authorities continued a criminal probe into the company’s UberPop ride-sharing service.
Uber continues to offer UberPop in four Dutch cities, despite already being fined 450,000 euros ($505,000) for the service, the public prosecutor said on its website Tuesday. The authorities believe the service violates national transport laws that prohibit organized taxi services without licensed drivers.
“They are suspected of offering taxi services without a permit in an organized way,” Marieke van der Molen, a spokeswoman for the public prosecutor, said by phone.
Legal and political challenges have piled up for San Francisco-based Uber in Europe. The company has suspended UberPop in France after a string of difficulties in the country, including clashes with taxi drivers, tensions with the government and arrests of top executives. A French court confirmed the ban on UberPop Sept. 22, according to Agence France-Presse, while the service has also been banned halted in Germany and Belgium. In Amsterdam, Uber drivers this year reported being threatened by masked men.
Documents were seized Tuesday and will be studied before proceeding with a criminal lawsuit, Van der Molen said. Uber’s office in the Dutch capital was raided in March and an employee was arrested in April for refusing to cooperate in a second raid, the prosecutor said at the time.
An Uber spokesman in Amsterdam confirmed Tuesday’s raid, declining to give further details.
This article was written by Celeste Perri and Elco Van Groningen from Bloomberg and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.
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Photo Credit: The logo of car-sharing service app Uber on a smartphone over a reserved lane for taxis in a street is seen in this photo illustration taken in Madrid. Sergio Perez / Reuters
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