PETALING JAYA: Illegal taxis at Kuala Lumpur's International Airports are getting more brazen, according to the Road Transport Department (JPJ).
It has already caught 31 suspects this year, compared with a total of 19 in 2015.
"This figure is worrying as it shows illegal taxis active here are increasing," said Selangor JPJ director Nazli Md Taib at a press conference on their latest operation to combat illegal taxis at KLIA and KLIA2 in Sepang.
According to Nazli, the majority of these illegal taxis were operating within the vicinity of KLIA2 , which accounted for 23 of the arrests.
He said foreigners were also getting into the game, with a Bangladeshi and Pakistani suspect among the 31 arrested.
"We found one driver who made RM1,800 (S$605.12) from a single return trip to Johor Baru from KLIA. That's why despite the very heavy punishment, there are still those who dare to flout the law," he said.
According to Nazli, the touts preferred to target foreigners as locals were more familiar with the pricing system here.
"Tourists are much easier to cheat, as they don't know the average price for trips. Arabs are a favourite target as they are seen to be more generous," said Nazli.
Nazli also urged the public to only use legalised forms of public transport for their own safety.
"These illegal cars are normally not insured to carry passengers. Also the risk of being robbed - or worse, raped - is much higher," said Nazli.
The 31 suspects were charged under Section 205(1) of the Public Transport Act 2010, which carries a fine up to RM50,000, imprisonment for no more than five years, or both.