Cordoba taxi reform turns nasty

The city of Córdoba is reforming its taxi bylaws, after a campaign by consumer union FACUA, which says they’re a decade out of date.

Trouble is, the new bylaws aren’t much better, and FACUA turned nasty over the issue.

One contentious little new bylaw rules that if you ring for a taxi via a service, the meter drops from the second the driver gets the order, and not from when the client actually climbs aboard.

Whilst this infuriated FACUA, which has started a local campaign to prevent the bylaws being signed into law using this as an example, it delighted the owners of the local radio-taxi service AJN and RNJ, along Dad, the founder of the service, JNC.

Now, radio taxi Cordoba was suffering after being hit with a fine of €115,000 by the Competition Commission. The fine came because they had a “blacklist” of people and areas they wouldn’t send taxis to, FACUA found out and denounced them.

So relations between the two groups weren’t the best.

Shortly after the FACUA campaign against the new by-laws started, a series of threatening emails and internet messages started appearing, naming the President of FACUA Córdoba, etc, etc.

Using the power of FACUA, he filed a denuncia with the Policia Nacional, who traced the IP’s and discovered… they were coming from the personal computers of AJN and RNJ.

Which shows that the Spanish police can be efficient, if they are being leaned on by a determined, well connected local heavyweight. Ah hem.

Anyway, FACUA has just dropped the court case against the two after they made a pubic apology to Francisco Martínez, the man they were cyber-threatening.

All in all, a nice tale of a consumers union standing up against the local influential bully boys who are in with the local townhalls. Spain could do with a bit more of this.

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