Case, when the Prague taxi driver wanted from the foreigner 12 thousand, instead of few hundred crowns, annoyed also Janek Rubeš. He has been recording dishonest drivers with hidden camera for couple of years. In the interview he describes, how is it possible, that the taxi driver asked for such a lot of money. He mentioned other methods of the thieves. For example, drivers refuse to unlock the door, until the customers pay the high price. “Other possibility is, that they do not want to drop off the luggage,” says Rubeš.
The tourist wanted a ride from Old Time Square to Congress centre in Prague 4. Instead of 6 kilometers, taxi driver drove with her 14 kilometers, and then asked for unbelievible 12 thousand crowns.
The tourist did not have so much money, so the cab driver took “only” 5 thousand crowns and 50 euro. She afterwards complained in the hotel and the receptionist called the police, who caught the thief after few hours.
„He is just a poor thief, no cab driver would ever stand up for him,” says Janek Rubeš in the interview for Blesk.cz.
Janek, is the ride for 12 thousand the biggest overpricing in the whole time, in which you are interested in the cab thefts?
I have heard many times about similar prices with transports to the airport – 300, 400, 500 euro. But I have never recorded them on the camera. Neither have police. Just a note, this thief has nothing to do with any taxi driver. He is just a poor thief, no cab driver would ever stand up for him. He just destroys the reputation of all taxi drivers, Prague and our whole country.
Can you understand, that this driver might wanted 12 thousand, instead of few hundreds and believed, he won’t have any problems?
Drivers try crowns/euros. So, when taximeter said 400, he just tried euros. I really do not know, I was not there. It is also possible, that the foreigner asked for the price in euros and the driver just pointed at taximeter.
How is it possible, he even tried to ask for that – is it because the tourists are mostly passive, let themselves be robbed and do not report anything? So the taxi drivers try more and more?
Tourists do not report it very often. Overpricing is mostly in tens of euros, so they do not want to ruin their vacation with it, or they do not even know, that the ride was overpriced. Nevetherless, the thieves try more and more.
So, could you say, that the foreigner from Asia is a unique case, that we don’t see often? Because she wasn’t afraid to complain.
Definitely she is not unique in overpricing. But not only thanks to her complaint, but also, according to my opinion, thanks to the good work of the city police and hotel receptionist, it was possible to solve the whole thing, even to the benefit of the tourist. That is, for me, personally, the most important thing. But the thief is definitely stealing somewhere else.
Do you have any other experience with this 45 years old taxi driver, or did he overpriced someone, who you know?
No, I have no direct or indirect experience with him.
What are the worst types of offences of the taxi drivers, that you remember?
I personally went from Old Time Square to Wenceslas Square for 820 crowns. Similar price for ride to Žižkov. From Pařížská to Anděl, so three kilometres, for 1 200 crowns. We have also recorded a thief, who drove foreigner to the airport for 2 000 crowns and did not want to let her out from the car. That is common practice. Other method is, they do not want to give them their luggage – this method is called: No money, no luggage.
In the last years, that you are interested in revealing the taxithieves, has the situation got any better? Or what are the differences, compared to the past?
My opinion is right the opposite. It scares me, that it is widely known in public. And it doesn’t happen only when an article appears. It happens every day, right in front of mayor Krnáčová. Their activity is unsuffient. I am not aware of any improvements. We should thank, in this case, only the tourist, the hotel and the team of the city police.
Many people are shocked, that this man has already been caught, but despite this, he still drives. How can that be possible?
That is a question for municipality. I am shocked, that thieves, who we have been recording for years, still park on the same spots and no one cares.