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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 melo <>
Date: Tue, 26 Jun 2007 09:06:54 +0200
Subject: My Dear Friend,

My Dear Friend, How are you and your family today?.I hope your alright. It's been long I heard from you. Well, I just want to use this medium to thank you very much for your earlier assistance to help me in receiving those Funds. I am obliged to inform you that I have succeeded in receiving the funds with the help of a new partner from Cuba. Everything was perfectly done because we strike a deal with one of the Lady accountant who works with (HSBC) bank and she rendered a tremendous help to us. My new partner initiated this idea and everything worked out successfully. In appreciation of your earlier assistance to me in receiving the Funds,I have decided to compensate you with the sum of $1.2 million in a cheque ( One million two Hundred Thousand United States Dollars). This is from my own share. I did this simply to show you that it is good to do good things to the right people always. Presently, I am in Japan with my family now for investment project with my own share under the advice of my new partner. Meanwhile, I didn't forget your past efforts and attempts to assist me in transferring those funds despite you latter started having a bais mind. I will be sending you e-mail from time to time to know if you have received your share or not. Please I will like you to accept this token with good faith as this is from the bottom of my heart, also comply with Mr Frank Morba directives so that he will send the money to you without any delay. Contact: Mr Frank Morba / WTM Secretary. Address: 118 Pmb Zone De Embassad Cotonou, Republic Du Benin. Email: ( feel free to get in touch with him, He will send the Bank Cashier Cheque in amount to you without any delay. I will also like you to reconfirm your contact information as you wish to receive your money to him as I stated below to enable him send the cheque to you. 1. FULL NAMES: 2. ADDRESS: 3. OCCUPATION: 4. TELEPHONE NUMBER: 5. CITY: 6. STATE: 7. COUNTRY: Or. Your bank Information depending on your desire. In the moment, I'm very busy here in Japan because of the investment projects, which the new partner and I are having at hand. Take care of yourself I hope to meet you soon.Yours Faithfully Engr.John Melo H.D.NTT Company.
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