Uber suspends controversial UberPop service in France

Ride-hailing company pulls plug on service declared illegal months ago, just days after top executives were arrested and sent for trial.

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Uber has suspended some services in France amid a long battle with authorities in the country over the controversial service, reports The Telegraph.

The company confirmed on Friday that it was putting a halt to its uberPOP service, six months after the operations were declared illegal.

Uber has had a series of run-ins in France. Earlier this week, two executives were arrested and in March, the company's Paris offices were raided.

Last week, the American singer Courtney Love was attacked by anti-Uber protesters amid a strike by taxi drivers.

Uber, a smartphone app, pairs potential passengers up with drivers without a taxi licence, and takes a cut of the fare. The service has become popular in many cities including London, and tends to be cheaper than a licensed taxi driver.

UberPOP, which exists in several European countries, claims to operate as a ride-sharing platform, rather than as a taxi service like in the UK, although some say the difference is largely for legal reasons. Uber still operates a more heavily-regulated, expensive, taxi-style service in France, but it is uberPOP that has generated the most anger for undercutting traditional taxi services.

Thibaud Simphaud, one of the executives arrested this week, told Le Monde that Uber suspended services "in a spirit of bringing peace". The company had previously said it would not halt operations unless instructed to do so by a court.

Read more of this report from The Telegraph.

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