Cyrus R. Vance Jr receives Freedom of the City of London
Cyrus R. Vance, Jr, the New York District Attorney, has received the Freedom of the City of London at Guildhall today (15 September) to mark the partnership between the City of London Police and the New York District Attorney’s Office, and their joint efforts to combat crime in their financial districts.
New York District Attorney Vance’s Freedom was championed by Adrian Leppard, Commissioner of the City of London Police, and was nominated subsequently by Henry Pollard and Douglas Barrow, the chairman and deputy chairman of the City of London Corporation’s Police Committee.
Following initial contact in September 2013 between the Commissioner and the New York District Attorney, a partnership developed to investigate and target cyber and financial crime in the Square Mile and New York’s business district. A pilot joint international investigation in July 2014 against cyber criminals led to wider joint working in other areas, including the secondment of staff within both organisations; planning a joint conference to be held this month; and developing a joint intelligence product detailing the threats faced in time for this conference.
New York District Attorney Vance’s ceremony at Guildhall began with him reading aloud the Declaration of a Freeman, and ended with him being greeted by Paul Double, the City of London’s Remembrancer, as a ‘Citizen of London’ and the presentation of his framed parchment certificate.
Speaking before the Freedom ceremony, Commissioner Adrian Leppard said: “New York District Attorney Vance is highly respected in the U.S. for his initiatives to combat transnational crime. His commitment to building stronger relationships with the City of London is enabling both cities to address the challenges of cyber crime and money laundering and in so doing, he is helping create a safer place in which to do business."
Henry Pollard, chairman of the City of London’s Police Committee, said: ‘’This award recognises the important and valuable partnership between the City of London Police and New York District Attorney Vance and, in particular, his sterling work to combat the increasingly prevalent, cyber-enabled financial crime. Financial crime is without borders, and the City of London Police helps provide a safe and secure venue for workers, residents and visitors, acknowledged by our various communities, and the assistance of our friends in New York is greatly welcomed and appreciated. Today’s ceremony helps cement this special relationship.’’
The Freedom of the City of London is believed to have begun in 1237 and enabled recipients to carry out their trade; and today, people are nominated for, or apply for, the Freedom, because it offers them a link with the historic City of London and one of its ancient traditions.
The Freedom is also offered to individuals by the City of London Corporation to help celebrate a significant achievement, or to pay tribute to their outstanding contribution to London life or public life. However, many of the so-called traditional privileges associated with the Freedom, such as driving sheep over London Bridge, no longer exist.
Eddie Townsend, Head of Media (Corporate Communications), City of London Police
Tel: 020 7601 2220 / Mobile: 07803 305197
ABOUT THE CITY OF LONDON CORPORATION:
The City of London Corporation is a uniquely diverse organisation. It supports and promotes the City as the world leader in international finance and business services and provides local services and policing for those working in, living in and visiting the Square Mile. It also provides valued services to London and the nation. These include the Barbican Centre and the Guildhall School of Music & Drama; the Guildhall Library and Art Gallery and London Metropolitan Archives; a range of education provision (including three City Academies); five Thames bridges (including Tower Bridge and the Millennium Bridge); the Central Criminal Court at Old Bailey; over 10,000 acres of open spaces (including Hampstead Heath and Epping Forest), and three wholesale food markets. It is also London’s Port Health Authority and runs the Animal Reception Centre at Heathrow. It works in partnership with neighbouring boroughs on the regeneration of surrounding areas and the City Bridge Trust, which it oversees, donates more than £15m to charity annually.