Oakland is trying to curb crime by putting a freeze on new pawnshops.
City lawmakers tell the Chronicle many secondhand dealers are prime destinations for criminals looking to get cash for stolen gold.
Leaders say the most affected area is the Fruitvale District, which has seen a spike in gold thefts and robberies this year.
The ban on new pawnshops lasts until December 30, to give lawmakers enough time to tighten rules and regulations.
Oakland had eight pawnshops three years ago.
There are more awaiting license approval, which will bring the number of pawn shops to 26.