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Cabbie leader in dock for shouting near cops

A LONDON taxi union chairman appeared in court yesterday accused of assaulting two police officers with the sound of a megaphone.

James Farrar, 51, faces two counts of assault by beating of an emergency worker after he used a megaphone near the police officers during a demonstration on March 4 2019.

He is expected to argue that sound waves do not count as physical force and therefore the use of the megaphone could not be assault by beating.

Mr Farrar, the chairman of the United Private Hire Drivers’ branch of the IWGB union, was taking part in a union demonstration against the congestion charge in Parliament Square when he used a megaphone near to Sgt James Lewis and PC Ann Spinks.

Prosecutor Terence Woods told Southwark Crown Court: “The defendant, it is alleged, used a loudhailer or megaphone in close proximity to police officers.

“There are two complainants who say their hearing was affected.”

The IWGB union, which mostly represents precarious workers in the gig economy, continues to fundraise to meet Mr Farrar’s legal costs.

Mr Farrar denies the two charges of assault.

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