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City to crack down on cloned cabs

    The city’s traffic police launched a campaign this month targeting “cloned cabs,” or cars disguised as taxis with drivers holding fake, or in some cases, having no licenses at all. The campaign will last until May next year.

    “The illegal taxis are well disguised. Because their plates or licenses are also fake, it is difficult to track them down,” said Chen Xiaochen, an official from the transportation commission’s law enforcement department. “But no one should try their luck with the law.”

    In a recent case, the traffic police arrested a driver of a cloned car after more than a month of investigation.

    On October 25, the suspect surnamed Li, driving a “taxi” with a car plate number FW6609, picked up an elderly couple at the crossroads of Zhaojiabang and Wuxing roads and headed to Hongqiao International Airport.

    On reaching the airport, the couple headed to the back of the car to remove their luggage. No sooner they had removed their luggage, Li drove off with their briefcase which was in the front seat.

    On investigation, police found that the vehicle did not belong to any taxi company, and the surveillance videos confirmed that Li was driving a cloned taxi.

    The officers traced Li to Jiading District. They narrowed down Li’s activity to a neighbourhood around Jiayuguan Road.

    Li was caught on December 5.