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"419" Scam – Advance Fee / Fake Lottery Scam

The so-called "419" scam is a type of fraud dominated by criminals from Nigeria and other countries in Africa. Victims of the scam are promised a large amount of money, such as a lottery prize, inheritance, money sitting in some bank account, etc.

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.

Keep in mind that scammers DO NOT use their real names when defrauding people.
The criminals either abuse names of real people or companies or invent names or addresses.
Any real people or companies mentioned below have NO CONNECTION to the scammers!

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:

Date: Tue, 31 May 2005 09:51:46 +0200
Subject: private and confidential


Attn: The President/CEO

I am Mr, ERIC BROWN, supervisor with the distressed Frist National Bank South Africa, I have urgent and very confidential business proposition for your attention and assistance.

On June 6, 2002, an Expatriate contractor with the South Africa Mining Corporation, Mr. Smith Andrea made a numbered time (Fixed) Deposit for twelve calendar months, valued at US$56,500,000.00 in my branch. Upon maturity, I sent a routine notification to his forwarding address but got no reply. After a month ,I sent a reminder and finally we discovered from his contract employers, the South Africa Mining Corporation that Mr. Smith Andrea died from an automobile accident. On further investigation, I found out that he died without making a WILL, and all attempts to trace his next of kin was fruitless since2003.

I therefore made further investigation and discovered that Mr. Smith Andrea did not declare any kin or relations in all his official documents, including his Bank Deposit paperwork in my Bank. This sum of US$56,500,000.00 is still sitting in my Bank and the interest is being rolled over with the principal sum at the end of each year. No one will ever come forward to claim it. According to South Africa Law, at the expiration of 5(five) years, the money will revert to the ownership of the South Africa Government if nobody applies to claim the fund.

Consequently, my proposal is that I will like you as an Expatriate Businessman to stand in as the overseas business partner to Mr, Smith Andrea so that the funds will be transferred smoothly, safely and without risk to your nominated overseas Account. This is simple, I will like you to provide immediately your full names and address so that the Attorney will prepare the necessary documents and affidavits which will put you in place as the next of kin/business partner to the Late Mr.Andrea .A bank account in any part of the world which you will provide will then facilitate the transfer of this money to you as the beneficiary/next of kin. The money will be paid into your account for us to share in the ratio of 70% for me and 30% for you.

There is no risk at all as all the paperwork for this transaction has been documented and my position as the insider will guarantee the successful execution of this transaction. If you are interested, please reply. Upon your response, I shall then provide you with more details and relevant information that will help you understand the
transaction better. Please observe utmost confidentiality, and rest assured that this transaction would be most profitable for both of us because I shall require your assistance to invest my share in your country. Thanks and regards.

Mr ERIC BROWN (Johannesburg ,South-Africa).

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