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Operation to protect city's taxi drivers

UNDERCOVER police will tail taxis in a bid to stop attacks on drivers.

Plain clothes officers have been deployed over fears that thieves are targeting cabbies in Glasgow late at night.

Chief Inspector Joe McKerns, area commander for Maryhill, Kelvin and Canal, said the plan was launched after concerns about drivers' safety.

It comes a week after Andy Burns, a 44-year-old taxi driver, and Jean Evans, a 68-year-old mother of three, were assaulted in Cambuslang.

As reported, a 33-year-old man was arrested in connection the incident last Friday evening.

Mr McKerns explained that unmarked police cars will follow taxis after they pick up hires to ensure drivers and passengers stay safe.

He said: "We have seen a slight increase in robberies and attempted robberies on taxi drivers during the last three months.

"The majority have been taking place late at night, or in the early hours of the morning, in the north of Glasgow.

"We have launched a scheme where plain-clothed officers, in an unmarked police car, will follow the taxi for a short time in a bid to reassure the driver.

"Sometimes, officers will use marked police vehicles, as it will give the driver the opportunity to flag down officers.

The plan was developed by Mr McKerns and Chief Inspector Simon Midgley, area commander for Springburn.

Police said attacks on cabbies was an "emerging problem" but they are committed to the safety of drivers and passengers.

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