Did Uber help drivers break the law in Denmark?

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Worawee Meepian/123RF
Aiding and abetting criminal activity isn’t a charge reserved just for people — apparently, companies can get in hot water for the same thing. The latest to be charged with such a crime is none other than controversy-magnet Uber, which on Friday was indicted in Denmark for allegedly helping two of its drivers violate taxi laws.

According to a news release from Copenhagen police’s prosecutor Vibeke Thorkil-Jensen’s, Uber was involved in “contributory infringement of [the] Taxi Act,” and faces a fine of up to $4,300 should the court rule against the San Francisco-based transportation giant. While this is the first time Uber has gotten in this sort of trouble in Denmark, it is by no means its first trip to the courts in the European continent. Many other countries have accused Uber and its drivers of violating their own taxi laws, and Denmark is simply the latest to join the chorus.

Last month, a Danish Uber driver was convicted of breaking taxi laws, incurring a fine of $855. Another driver failed to appear in court, and was consequently sentenced in absentia. But now, Uber is also being held responsible for these two individuals’ crimes. According to Thorkil-Jensen (translated via Google Translate), “It is now established that the drivers have run contrary to taxi legislation. Therefore, we indicted the company behind to help these illegalities. There is a fundamental test case where prosecutors want to get the court’s assessment of contributing sense lasted for illegal taxi services.”

Uber, for its part, seems relatively unconcerned, with a spokesperson telling Reuters, “We welcome the opportunity to clarify our legal position to the prosecutor.” A court date has yet to be set, and in the meantime, the company says that it will continue to offer its services to the people of Denmark.

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