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Posted at 01:52 PM ET, 01/24/2012

Taxi company shuttered in rare D.C. enforcement action


Monday’s cab company shutdown is the first in recent memory. (Michael Williamson - The Washington Post)
The D.C. Taxicab Commission’s run of forceful regulation continues: Chairman Ron Linton announced Monday that the commission is shutting down a D.C. cab company for numerous violations.

Anacostia Cab Association has been told to cease and desist operations, Linton said, because it was unable to show that it had paid taxes, that it was a properly organized and registered company and that it had a proper place of business. Anacostia provided a false address on documentation submitted to the commission, Linton added.

“This is the beginning,” Linton said Monday. “We’ve got 116 companies. We’re going to make sure all the companies are adhering to the rules and regulations.”

Younis Elsayedri, Anacostia’s owner, said he has done everything the commission has asked him to do, including paying a fine and resubmitting an application. Elsayedri said he was overseas until recently, and company management in place at the time was unfamiliar with the application procedure.

“They can’t shut us,” he said Monday. “They didn’t give us any notice. I am surprised at what you are telling me.”

The action against Anacostia, first reported by the Examiner, comes less than two weeks after Linton executed a sting operation against a limo driver affiliated with Uber, the smartphone-based booking service. That driver was cited for license violations and charging an improper fare.

Monday’s cease-and-desist order is accompanied by a separate complaint detailing a spate of violations by Anacostia’s drivers, including instances of fleeing hack inspectors and driving without licenses or insurance.

Under the order, Anacostia’s cabs must cease operations and obscure their markings. Nine of the 26 cabs registered to the company are driver-owned; those drivers, Linton said, are “going to have to high-tail to other companies and re-affiliate” to stay on the road.

Elsayedri said he would fight the shutdown order, perhaps in court. “This new guy,” he said, referring to Linton, “he doesn’t know [expletive] about taxicabs.”

By  |  01:52 PM ET, 01/24/2012

 
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