A taxi driver in the Southern Chinese city of Fuzhou has been caught red-handed cheating passengers by installing illegal hardware that alters the meter, the Fujian Evening News reported.
The driver, surnamed Chen, was caught on Saturday night at Fuzhou Railway Station by officials who had received complaints about Chen’s meter working abnormally.
A close inspection showed that from August 11–27, Chen had overcharged passengers on 30 occasions.
In one instance on August 11, in a trip that lasted 43 minutes, the meter registered a distance of 283.5km and a fare of 847.60 yuan (HK$985). For the taxi to have travelled that distance in that time, the vehicle would have to travel at nearly 400km/h – faster than China’s most rapid bullet trains, the report said.
Chen admitted that he had installed a remote control device known in Chinese as “run fast” on his meter that enabled drivers to exaggerate the mileage.
Under Chinese law, drivers found using such devices will have their meters and illegal gains confiscated in addition to paying fines.
A local official was quoted as saying that tax drivers like Chen mainly targeted tourists who were unfamiliar with the area.