Financial Crimes

Financial crimes include phone scams, counterfeit money, identity theft and embezzlement. Scammers often target the elderly, low-income people and business owners. In some cases scammers have posed as IRS, courts or utility representatives to cheat victims out of their money. Members of San Francisco’s Chinese community have also been targeted by con artists promising relief from a curse or illness in exchange for cash. In all of these cases, the SFPD is here to help.

If you believe you have been the victim of a financial crime:

Call the SFPD Special Victims Unit (SVU) at 1-415-553-1521, from 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM on weekdays.

Special Victims Unit – Financial Crimes
Hall of Justice, Room 500
850 Bryant Street
San Francisco, CA 94103

Make sure to collect evidence of the crime:

Evidence includes eyewitness accounts or documents. Please contact the financial institutions involved as they are not allowed to provide police with information without your consent. Useful documents include account statements, receipts and canceled checks.

Perhaps you are concerned about a financial issue that falls short of a crime, such as a dispute over a bill. If you cannot show that a crime has been committed, you may still be able to pursue civil remedies, such as making your complaint to a regulatory agency, entering mediation or arbitration with the other party or even suing in civil court to recover damages. You may wish to consult with an attorney or take your case to the San Francisco Small Claims court, which will hear it free of charge.

SVU officers are trained to respond to financial crimes targeting the elderly. If you need to appoint a conservator, you may want to contact the San Francisco City and County Department of Aging and Adult Services at 1-415-355-3555.

Other resources:

  • To report bad checks, call the San Francisco District Attorney’s Bad Check Enforcement Unit, at 1-415-734-3115.
  • To report a theft of mail, contact the U.S. Postal Inspectors, at 1-877-876-2455.
  • To report a crime involving counterfeit currency, contact the U.S. Secret Service San Francisco field office at 1-415-576-1210.