Every passenger has the right to a safe and secure ride home regardless of the circumstances.
18 October, 2014 at 12:27 am in Real Estate
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spot just south of central Whangarei on April 21, last year.
While driving a passenger to Hikurangi about 4am, Reti spotted the complainant walking towards Whangarei.
He offered her a ride, and she got into the front seat.
Reti dropped his passenger at Hikurangi, before driving the complainant back towards Whangarei, but drove past her address to a secluded location.
As a taxi driver, Reti abused the trust the complainant had placed in him, Judge de Ridder said.
Adidas adiPure 11Pro for sale She continued to have nightmares, lacked confidence, was suicidal, and would walk or stay indoors rather than getting into a taxi in future.
The judge said the effects on her were deep-seated and continuing.
Cheap Nike Tiempo Legend V He said although the complainant had consumed alcohol prior to getting into the taxi, she wasn't drunk but was vulnerable to Reti's actions, which were clearly premeditated.
Cheap Nike Hypervenom The Court of Appeal, he said, had indicated that a high degree of trust was expected in public service drivers.
Reti had two previous convictions but neither was relevant to his latest offending, Judge de Ridder said.
In 2011, Reti was convicted of theft by the Kaikohe District Court and sentenced to 70 hours' community work.
Crown prosecutor Nicole Dore said taxi drivers were required to obtain appropriate licences and to meet the test of being fit and proper persons to work in that capacity.
She said they held positions of trust in the community and the public should be able to rely on them to take them safely to their destinations.
Cheap Nike Magista Obra Abuse of trust, vulnerability of the complainant and premeditation were the aggravating factors of Reti's offending, she submitted.
Reti's lawyer, Arthur Fairley, said the complainant wasn't threatened or subjected to violence while she was in the taxi.
Judge de Ridder imposed a sentence of eight-and-a-half years on both charges.
The executive director of the New Zealand Taxi Federation, Roger Heale, said there was zero tolerance on inappropriate behaviour by taxi drivers towards their passengers.
"Every passenger has the right to a safe and secure ride home regardless of the circumstances.
"A driver should treat his car the same as his office and act in a professional manner at all times."
He said every taxi company had its own policies and procedures in place in terms of conduct for drivers and that the New Zealand Transport Agency usually did background checks on them.
One third of taxi companies throughout the country, including Auckland Co-op Taxis, are members of the taxi federation.