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Victims never receive this non-existent fortune but are tricked into sending their money to the criminals, who remain anonymous. They hide their real identity and location by using fake names and fake postal addresses as well as communicating via anonymous free email accounts and mobile phones.
Read more about such scams here or in our 419 FAQ. Use the Scam-O-Matic to verify suspect emails.
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Fraud email example:
From: "Elizabeth Welsh" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Tue, 31 May 2005 02:17:03 +0000
Subject: HELP ME HEAL THE WORLD.
MRS ELIZABETH WELSH
54 MURTALA MOHAMMED WAY,
PLEASE ENDEAVOUR TO USE IT FOR THE CHILDREN OF GOD.
I am the above named person from NIGERIA. I am married
to MR PATRICK GERALD WELSH who worked with NIGERIA
embassy in LAGOS for nine years before he died in the
year 1999. We were married for eleven years without a
child. He died after a brief illness that
lasted for only four days.
Before his death we were both born again Christians.
Since his death I decided not to re-marry or get a
child outside my matrimonial home which the Bible is
When my late husband was alive he deposited the sum
of £7.5 Million (seven Million five hundred thousand
pound sterling)with an OFFSHORE BANK here in
EDO STATE.Presently, this money is still under the safe
keeping of the BANK.
Recently, my Doctor told me that I would not last
for the next SEVEN months due to my cancer problems.
Though what disturbs me most is my stroke .Having
known my condition,I decided to donate this fund to
church or better still a christian individual That
will utilize this money the way I am going to instruct
here in. I want a church that will use this fund on,
orphanages and widows propagating the word of God and
to ensure that the house of God is maintained. The
Bible made us to understand that Blessed is the hand
I took this decision because I don't have any child
that will inherit this money and my husband relatives
are not Christians and I don't want my husband's hard
earned money to be misused by unbelievers and in an
ungodly manner. Hence the reason for taking this bold
I am not afraid of death hence I know where I am
going. I know that I am going to be in the bossom of
the Lord. I know that the lord will fight my case and
I shall hold my peace.
I don't need any telephone communication in this
regard because of my health. With God all things are
possible. As soon as I receive your reply I forward
your personal information to my husband's Attorney in
London who will contact the BANK and introduce you as
the legal owner of this fund before transfering the
fund into your nominated Bank Account in your country.
You will be issued a letter of authority by him that
will empower you as the original- beneficiary of this
fund. I want you and the church to always pray for me
because the lord is my shepherd. My happiness is that
I lived a life of a worthy Christian. Whoever that
wants to serve the Lord must serve him in spirit and
Please assure me that you will act accordingly as I
Your response should be channeled to my alternate
email account at
Hoping to hear from you as soon as possible.
Remain blessed in the name of the Lord.
Yours in Christ,
Mrs Elizabeth Welsh.