Uber sued by women who allege they were raped by drivers

Uber sued by women who allege they were raped by drivers

Uber sued by women who allege they were raped by drivers

The court complaint alleges that Uber does everything it can to continue its use of low cost, inadequate background checks for drivers and failed to properly monitor drivers for any inappropriate or violent conduct once they become hired.

The women claim that they are not the only ones-that drivers have been using their rail-hailing services as a platform to sexually assault and harass more than 1,000 riders.

The complaint notes how MA had initiated a stricter review of potential Uber drivers. It required Uber, Lyft and other companies to reject any driver who has been convicted of a violent felony or a terrorism-related offense, or is a registered sex offender.

It asks the court for unspecified damages to compensate the women, and also seeks court-ordered safety measures including fingerprint background checks for drivers and a panic button on the Uber app that would alert the company and authorities to safety problems.

Uber said it was reviewing the lawsuit, according to The Washington Post. "Specifically drivers have the means and opportunity to veer off route without detection, trap passengers inside their vehicles and commit physical and sexual violence without witnesses".

The "class-action" lawsuit filed by the women with the condition of anonymity, compiles all those victims who were subject to rape, sexual assault or gender-motivated violence or harassment by Uber drivers in the last four years.

The driver, Nimer Abdallah, carried the woman - who was barely conscious after having two drinks - upstairs to her apartment and allegedly raped her, the lawsuit states. He was arrested and charged with two counts of sexual battery, and Uber refunded her $9.51 for the ride.

The driver Miguel, whose last name is unknown, allegedly sexually assaulted her in the auto, followed her into her home and forced her to have sex with him before leaving, the lawsuit states.

The lawsuit also gets into other controversies facing Uber.

But what these women allege happened to them are not isolated incidents.

Uber's image has been tarnished by findings of sexual harassment of employees and multiple reports of drivers assaulting passengers.

Jeanne M. Christensen, one of the attorneys with Wigdor LLP who filed the lawsuit, called on Uber to reveal how many reports it has received about sexual assaults and harassment.

© 2017 San Jose Mercury News under contract with NewsEdge/Acquire Media.

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