New chief officer team at City of London Police
In January 2022, Commissioner Angela McLaren and Assistant Commissioners Pete O’Doherty and Paul Betts began their new roles in the chief officer team at the City of London Police.
Commissioner Angela McLaren began her new role on 4 January 2022 after joining the force in 2020 as Assistant Commissioner for Economic and Cyber Crime.
Commissioner McLaren succeeds Commissioner Ian Dyson QPM, who retired following a 38-year policing career which included six years as commissioner in the Square Mile.
Commissioner McLaren said: “I’ve been overwhelmed by the warm welcome I’ve received at the City of London Police, especially as I joined the force during a global pandemic, making it almost impossible to meet some colleagues face to face.
“This is a truly unique force, both in terms of the local community it operates in, and its national responsibilities for economic and cyber crime. It takes a number of skilled teams to ensure operational standards remain high.
“The last year has been an exceptional time for policing. In the City we have experienced a high level of protest activity, an evolving fraud and cyber crime landscape, and, of course, increased scrutiny following the murder of Sarah Everard.
“Rebuilding trust is essential to ensure UK police forces can operate to the best of their abilities, and to the level expected of them. The relationships we have with the communities we operate in are some of the most important assets at our disposal within UK policing, and we must do all we can to protect them.
“We are soon to launch our new Policing Plan. One of the major themes is to ensure everyone living in, working in or visiting the City of London feels safe in the knowledge that our officers are there to protect them, and we will look to demonstrate this in a number of ways.
“Tackling violence against women and girls is an important part of this. We have introduced a Violence Against Women and Girls task force, made up of officers from across the City of London Police, charity Victim Support, and the City of London Corporation, working in partnership to keep women safe.
“We are also working closely with licensed premises, transport hubs, other forces, and business and community partners to keep everyone safe whilst they enjoy the City. This has included the introduction of initiatives such as Ask for Angela and Street Safe.
“Protecting the City from the threat of terrorism remains a key priority for us. The City is iconic and we must never be complacent. Our Project Servator officers can turn up anywhere at any time to identify suspicious activity and deter those looking to cause disruption.
“As National Lead Force for Economic and Cyber Crime, we are dedicated to protecting the UK from this type of criminality, and to overseeing the policing response. These days we all live our lives more and more online and must do all we can to keep safe in the virtual world.
“While many of us have been spending more time at home on our computers over the last two years as we work together to slow the spread of COVID-19, the instances of online fraud and cyber crime have been increasing in number and complexity.
“Our officers are raising awareness of threats such as romance fraud, phishing scams and card payment fraud, to help protect people from falling for these kinds of schemes, and to provide them with the necessary information to report these offences to us.
“Policing doesn’t just stop once the criminal has been caught. We have a duty of care to support victims of crime, and to constantly evaluate and improve the service we provide to them. We will work with partners and third- party organisations to ensure the welfare of victims, and to gather feedback on how our performance can be improved. We will also focus on bringing more offenders to justice, and work with partners to prevent re-offending. Our new plan will very much have victims at its heart.
“The past two years have been very challenging for society and policing. But with the support of my new chief officer team, and a dedicated workforce, we can look forward to a positive future in the City.”
Assistant Commissioners Pete O’Doherty and Paul Betts
At the start of January 2022, Assistant Commissioners Pete O’Doherty and Paul Betts were welcomed into the City of London Police by the force’s new commissioner, Angela McLaren.
AC O’Doherty rejoins the force following two and a half years at the South East Regional Crime Unit at Thames Valley Police, where he held the role of Assistant Chief Constable in charge of regional crime and counter terrorism. His new title is UK lead for Policing Fraud.
AC O’Doherty said: “I am excited to be back at the City of London Police. It feels like returning home after spending most of my career here.
“I have found myself enormously impressed by the steps the force is taking to make the City of London Police an increasingly inclusive and diverse place to work. I will encourage everyone to celebrate individualism across the workforce, and by doing so, ensure everyone has fair access to opportunity.
“With regards to my national role overseeing economic crime, cyber crime and fraud across the UK, I am looking forward to working with our experts in this space. Our whole portfolio of teams, including Action Fraud, the Insurance Fraud Enforcement Department (IFED), the Police Intellectual Property Crime Unit (PIPCU) and the Dedicated Card Payment Crime Unit (DCPCU) are working tirelessly to identify and prevent different types of fraud.
“Our recent work highlighting the dangers of romance fraud has provided the public with information on how to improve their online safety, and tools to report their concerns. One of my priorities is to ensure we provide the best support possible to victims of fraud.”
AC Betts will oversee operational policing and security. He joined the City of London Police from the Metropolitan Police Service where he held the position of Commander and Head of Professional Standards and Recognition. Before that, he spent over a decade at Sussex Police working across a number of key areas, including public order and public safety, firearms, transformation and contact, and command and control.
AC Betts said: “I am impressed with the close-knit, community feel of the City of London Police. It is clear that our officers and staff are firmly embedded in the communities they serve, and are dedicated to keeping people safe and secure.
“The City of London is a unique environment, and although we are surrounded by offices, there is also a thriving residential community and around 20 million visitors per year (pre- COVID) to the iconic sites situated in the Square Mile. Because of this, our officers deal with a wide variety of criminal activity using a number of different assets, such as our mounted unit and state-of-the-art CCTV technology. I am looking forward to learning more about how our officers and staff collaborate to ensure the most effective results.
“Recent events have damaged the trust the public has in UK policing. One of my priorities is to rebuild that trust and ensure our officers and staff are operating at the highest possible standards.
“I want all of our communities to feel safe and be safe in the City and in particular I will look to tackle the threat of violence against women and girls.
“I’ve been encouraged by what I’ve seen so far, and I look forward to building on this.”
The City of London Police is currently recruiting. If you are considering a career in policing visit: https://careers.cityoflondon.police.uk/
To report a crime, or provide us with information, visit the City of London Police website or call 101
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Read related article below from retired City of London Police Commissioner Ian Dyson: