Uber seeks to dismiss India rape lawsuit

Uber says its US unit had nothing to do with alleged assault and it's outside the reach of US courts

Uber Technologies has asked a California court to dismiss a civil lawsuit brought against it by a woman who alleges she was raped by an Uber driver while taking a trip in Delhi.

In part, Uber contests that it never had a relationship with the driver in question and that the alleged crime falls outside of the jurisdiction of U.S. courts.

The lawsuit was filed in January and relates to an incident in early December in which the woman, who was not identified, took a 45-minute Uber ride home. She fell asleep in the car and says she woke up to find the car parked in a secluded area and the driver on top of her. She was raped and assaulted for more than 30 minutes, according to the lawsuit.

With a building public outcry in India against the company, Uber called the assault "an abhorrent crime" and said it was committed to working with the New Delhi police to bring the perpetrator to justice.

In a late Monday filing in San Francisco, Uber drew a distinction between Uber Technologies, the U.S.-based parent company, and Uber B.V., the Dutch-based subsidiary that operates the Uber service in India.

"This case has everything to do with India and the Netherlands, and nothing to do with the United States," it said.

"Plaintiffs counsel has chosen to sue only Uber Technologies, which never had any relationship with Yadav, the alleged assailant," it said. "Yadavs only contractual relationship with any Uber entity was with Uber B.V., a Dutch company not party to this suit."

Uber, like many companies, runs its international operations through a subsidiary in the Netherlands. The company, which often champions the so-called sharing economy, benefits from this arrangement by reducing or avoiding taxes in many countries where it operates.

Uber B.V. is one of more than 100 distinct legal entities around the world that sit under the Uber brand, it said.

The company went on to argue that a California courtroom was not the right place for justice to be served as the assault took place in India between two Indian citizens.

The original lawsuit asks the court to order Uber to take affirmative steps to remedy the alleged conduct and prevent repeated occurrences.

Uber called the demands "impermissible, unworkable, and unprecedented" and said such an injunction would "rewrite Uber's business policies worldwide."

The plaintiff also seeks damages. A court case against Uber in the Netherlands or India, if successful, would likely be much less costly to the company than one in the U.S.

Uber's lawyers have asked for a hearing in July to argue that the case be dismissed.

Martyn Williams covers mobile telecoms, Silicon Valley and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Follow Martyn on Twitter at @martyn_williams. Martyn's e-mail address is martyn_williams@idg.com

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags internetlegalInternet-based applications and servicesCivil lawsuitsUber

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Martyn Williams

IDG News Service
Show Comments


James Cook University - Master of Data Science Online Course

Learn more >




Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles


PCW Evaluation Team

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?