Uber's Hong Kong offices raided
Police arrest five Uber drivers, are pictured seizing documents, iPads and laptops
Uber's offices in Hong Kong were raided by police on Tuesday, with five Uber drivers being arrested for operating illegally, Reuters reported yesterday.
According to the report, police had taken issue with a number of drivers for operating without proper car hire permits, or third-party insurance. These drivers were discovered through an undercover operation which saw police use the Uber app to hail cars.
Hong Kong news channels showed pictures of police carrying out office equipment such as iPads and computers, as well as what appeared to be documents.
In a statement to Reuters, Uber's North Asia spokesperson, Harold Li, said that the company was working with the authorities to ensure that regulations are met.
"Uber ensures that all rides are covered by insurance, and all drivers on the platform undergo an extensive background check," Li told Reuters in an email. He added that the company stands by its "driver-partners 100%".
This office raid is the latest in a string of controversies surrounding the young ride-hailing app, which is currently valued at $51bn. Chinese authorities raided an Uber office in May because they said that the company was suspected of running an unlicensed operation. Meanwhile, in Hong Kong, taxi drivers have protested against the company because they believe it is ruining their livelihoods.
And earlier in the summer, Uber had to suspend operations in France due to violent protests against it.