A TAXI driver claimed he was carrying out a medical examination when he touched a female passenger’s thigh and allegedly asked if her pants came down.

The cabbie told Bury Council’s licensing and safety panel he was a former child wrestler and had been “trying to ascertain what kind of injury the complainant had” after noticing she had a limp.

While the young Asian woman was sat in the back of his car, he asked to look at her swollen knee before touching it and moving his hand up to her thigh.

The driver’s solicitor, Mr Khan, told that there was no sexual intent and the comments about the woman’s pants coming down had been misinterpreted.

But members unanimously voted to suspend his hackney carriage/private hire licence for four months. He must also take a communications exam before his licence can be reinstated.

Minutes from the behind-closed-doors meeting state that the panel had accepted the complainant’s version of events as there was no reason to dispute her honesty.

The minutes add: “Even based on the licence holder’s explanation of events, his behaviour had been unacceptable and unprofessional and not of the standard expected.

“The allegations were sufficiently serious to merit due consideration and that it was due to the complainant not wanting to proceed that a further investigation had not taken place and it is directly relevant to a working role with members of the public.”

The report also notes that the driver accepted most of the “serious allegations” made.

The panel was told that the complainant booked a taxi to take her from Bury, to her home in Rochdale and when the taxi arrived sat in the back seat.

During the course of the journey, the licence holder allegedly asked personal questions about the complainant and her family.

On arriving at her home, he turned to face her and told her that in future if she wanted a lift she could ring his private number.

She gave the driver her number as she felt scared, and at this point the “medical examination” of her knee took place.

After leaving the vehicle, she immediately blocked the driver’s number and told her taxi driver uncle about the incident.

He advised her to report it to tell the council’s licensing unit and she also gave a statement to the police, but did not take the matter further for fear of reprisals.

The taxi driver, who has lived in the UK for 18 years and been taxi driver for three years, has no criminal convictions.

He has 21 days to appeal to the magistrates court.