Skip to main content
Press Release

Federal Prosecutors Ready for COVID-19 Scams

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District of California


SAN DIEGO – The U.S. Attorney’s Office will remain vigilant in detecting, investigating and prosecuting  fraud schemes related to the COVID-19 crisis.

There have been reports of individuals and businesses selling fake cures for COVID-19 online and engaging in other forms of fraud; reports of phishing emails from entities posing as the World Health Organization or the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; and reports of malware being inserted onto mobile apps designed to track the spread of the virus.

“The pandemic is dangerous enough without greedy lawbreakers seeking to profit from public panic,” said U.S. Attorney Robert Brewer. “This office will make the investigation and prosecution of all criminal conduct related to the current pandemic a top priority.  It is important that criminals know that this national crisis offers no safe harbor for them.  We will work together to ensure that those who violate federal law will be brought to justice.”

The U.S. Attorney’s Office will work closely with the Department of Justice as well state and local authorities to both ensure that we hear about misconduct as quickly as possible and that all appropriate enforcement tools are available to punish it.



Kelly Thornton (619) 546-9726 or

Updated March 19, 2020

Press Release Number: CAS20_0319_COVID-19 Scams