SEVENTEEN Bendigo drivers have been issued fines for offering illegal lifts in exchange for cash.
Commercial Passenger Vehicles Victoria issued $1983 fines to the drivers following a joint operation with Victoria Police last month.
The operation in Bendigo on July 19 and 20 targeted unaccredited drivers who were driving unauthorised vehicles in exchange for cash.
CPVV chief executive Aaron de Rozario said the group's intelligence team had identified several closed social media groups across regional Victoria, including Bendigo, Ballarat and Geelong.
"We've provided ample opportunities for illegal operators to comply with the law, including direct communication with Facebook site administrators," Mr de Rozario said.
"We've educated illegal operators like the Lifts for Cash groups on the safety risks for drivers and passengers, and they've chosen to ignore us.
"We won't compromise public safety, which is why we worked with the local police to take action against these illegal operators."
All drivers offering trips for payment must be accredited with CPVV by law.
The vehicles must be registered as commercial passenger vehicles and meet the required vehicle safety standards.
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