A taxi driver is calling more protection from police after being left “traumatised” following an attack by passengers who refused to pay.

Muhammad Ghafar has felt like a “nervous wreck” and has been unable to work due to back injuries following the incident in Watford town centre between 1am and 1.05am on Monday, December 4.

When he told two male passengers it was company policy for them to pay their fare upfront, they refused and pushed him, before getting out of the vehicle, grabbing him by the shoulders, and kicking and punching him in a two-minute assault.

They also smashed his mobile phone and keys before punching the front windscreen of his cab and making off towards Rickmansworth Road.

Watford Observer:

The windscreen of the taxi was damaged during the attack.

Mr Ghafar believes taxi drivers should not feel threatened or intimidated while they are doing their job and wants police to protect drivers more – particularly during the busy Christmas period.

He said: “I’m really scared at the moment and not working as I have been left with back problems since the attack after they grabbed my shoulders and twisted my back.”

Hertfordshire Constabulary has been contacted about providing more protection for taxi drivers and are investigating this incident.

Anyone with information should call the non-emergency number 101, quoting C1/17/6785, or report information online at www.herts.police.uk/report.

Alternatively, you can contact the independent crime-fighting charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or through their Anonymous Online Form at www.crimestoppers-uk.org.

No personal details are taken, information cannot be traced or recorded and you will never need to go to court.