South Korea charges Uber with illegal taxi operations

Uber's woes never seem to end.

South Korea's largest news agency, The Yonhap News Agency reports that some 30 people, including Uber's chief of the local unit have been charged under suspicion of running illegal taxi services in South Korea.

The head of Uber Korea, heads of six different car rental firms, as well as a number of drivers, are suspected of operating without a licence, local police have said.

Uber CEO Travis Kalanick, who has already been indicted on charges of establishing and running Uber Korea, was booked again on suspicion of conducting an illegal business, they added.

The police have said that Uber Korea took 20 per cent of passenger's taxi fare as commission, and that one car rental firm made 96 million won (£57,000) in three months.

Police also said the Uber app poses a risk for passenger safety as drivers are not screened, cars are uninsured and mobile phone numbers and credit card numbers could be leaked.

"We plan to summon Kalanick soon and check the transaction details of overseas bank accounts to conduct further investigation into those involved in the case," a police official said, speaking on condition of anonymity. "If Kalanick continues to disobey the summons, we plan to seek an arrest warrant against him."

The CEO has remained in the United States and refuses to stand trial in South Korea.

Uber’s been making headlines almost since its inception, and only recently IT Pro Portal reported how a database of drivers who work with the Uber app was accessed last May, resulting in the possible theft of information on 50,000 drivers.