Top French court upholds ban on Uber's low-cost service, after escalating legal dispute

France's top constitutional court has ruled that Uber's lowest-cost ride-hailing service can be banned, upholding legislation passed amid sometimes violent protests by taxi drivers.

In a ruling Tuesday, the panel upheld French legislation that outlawed the UberPop service, which the company suspended over the summer in hopes of defusing an escalating legal dispute with the government.

Tuesday's decision comes days ahead of a trial for two senior European managers for the San Francisco-based company, who were charged with deceptive commercial practices. The suspended service had linked users to drivers without professional taxi or chauffeur licenses and taxi drivers claimed unfair competition.

Uber's regular app-based service continues to function in France.