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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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Some comments by the Scam-O-Matic about the following email:

Fraud email example:

From: "john bells" <>
Date: Mon, 06 Feb 2006 10:12:02 +0000
Subject: From the Desk of:Mr.John Bells,

>From the Desk of:Mr.John Bells,
Alfonso XII, 18, 4 Dcha
28014 Madrid,Spain
Attn:President/CEO ,
Urgent and Confidential:
Re: Transfer of ($10,400.000.00) Ten Million Four Hundred Thousand United
States Dollars.
We want to transfer to abroad ($10,400.000.00 USD). Ten Million Four Hundred
Thousand United States Dollars from a Security Company, Servetrust Finance
Inc., Madrid, Spain. I want to quietly look for a reliable and honest person
who will be capable and fit to provide either an existing bank account or
set up a new bank account immediately to receive this money, even an empty
account can serve as long as you will remain honest to me till the end of
this important business transaction. I want to believe that you will never
let me down either now or in the future.
I am John Bells the auditor general, Servetrust and Finance Inc., Madrid,
Spain. During the course of our auditing, I discovered a floating fund in an
account opened in the security company in 1999 and since 2001 nobody has
operated on this account again. After going through some old files in the
records, I discovered that the owner of the account died without a (HEIR),
hence the money has been floating and if I do not remit this money out
urgently it will be forfeited for nothing. The owner of this account was Mr.
Manfred Schichegger, a foreigner, and an industrialist, he died since 2001
and no other person knows about this account or anything concerning it. The
account has no beneficiary and my investigation proved to me as well that
Manfred Schichegger until his death was the Managing Director, Dobrava Mbh $
We will start the first transfer with Six million united states dollars
($6,000.000.00), upon successful transfer without any disappointment from
your side, we shall re-apply for the transfer of the remaining Four million
four hundred thousand united states dollars ($4,400.000.00) into your
account bringing the total sum Ten million four hundred thousand united
states dollars ($10,400.000.00). I am contacting you as a foreigner because
this money can only be approved to a foreigner with a valid international
passport, driver’s license and foreign account because the money is in US
dollars and the former owner of the account Mr. Manfred Schichegger is a
foreigner. I will like us to sign a binding agreement that will bind us
together in the business, I am revealing all these to you with belief that
you will never let me down in this business, you are the first and the only
person I am contacting for the business so please reply urgently for me to
tell you the next step to take.
You should forward your telephone and fax numbers and your bank account
details that will be used in transferring the money. You will have to give
me the assurance that this money will be intact pending my physical arrival
in your country for sharing and disbursement of the fund.
I look forward to your earliest response through my alternative email:
Best regards,
John Bells.

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