Mike Duheme takes charge as chief of Canada's national police

FILE PHOTO: Mike Duheme takes charge as chief of Canada's national police

(Reuters) - Mike Duheme, a law enforcement veteran with more than 35 years of experience, took charge as the Commissioner of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), months after he was named interim chief.

Duheme formally took over as 25th head of Canada's national police force, popularly known as the Mounties, from Brenda Lucki.

Lucki, who became the first female chief of the police force in 2018, left the top job in March.

"Guided by my mandate letter, we are moving forward on change and innovation," Duheme said during a Change of Command ceremony at the Salaberry Armoury in Gatineau, Quebec.

"We're building the modern, inclusive and diverse police organization that Canadians expect and deserve," he said.

"The opportunities and expectations for the RCMP are clear, and together, we are ready to take on the challenge."

Hailing from Chambly, Quebec, the police veteran began his career as a general duty investigator in New Minas, Nova Scotia. Duheme has served in four provinces and on a Kosovo peacekeeping mission internationally.

Before his appointment as commissioner in March, he served as deputy commissioner of federal policing where he was involved in investigating drugs, organised and economic crime, and terrorist criminal activity.

(Reporting by Nilutpal Timsina in Bengaluru; Additional reporting by Shivani Tanna; Editing by Robert Birsel)