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Sunnyvale Department of Public Safety
Tuesday January 24th, 2023 :: 09:27 a.m. PST


Jewelry Swap Swindlers

Community members, we’d like to make you aware of a common scam that has been occurring throughout the Bay Area, including in Sunnyvale. It is referred to as Jewelry Swap Swindling. The suspects tend to travel in vehicles and approach unsuspecting victims while on a walk by themselves. The suspect approaches the victim and engages in conversation, typically asking for directions or pretending to be their acquaintance. The suspect will then place fake gold jewelry on the victim by giving them a hug or coming into close contact with them. Some scammers even offer fake jewelry and counterfeit money as a “sign of gratitude.” Unbeknownst to the victim, the suspect surreptitiously removes the victim’s real jewelry from their neck, or hands, in the process. 

We’d like you to practice extra vigilance when out for a walk, especially if you are by yourself. 

If you fall victim to or witness a similar event, call 911. If able, attempt to write down or remember the suspect and vehicle description. This can assist law enforcement in identifying, apprehending, and prosecuting the suspects. 

As always, exercise extreme caution when approached by suspicious vehicles or subjects. If you have fallen victim to this jewelry scam, please contact the Sunnyvale Department of Public Safety’s non-emergency line at (408) 730-7180. For crimes in progress, call 911 immediately.

Sunnyvale Department of Public Safety
700 All America Way
Sunnyvale, CA 94086

Emergency: 9-1-1
Non-emergencies: 408-730-7100

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