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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: mellisa coleman <>
Reply-To: <>
Date: Thu, 16 Aug 2007 13:55:17 +0200
Subject: From Mrs. Mellisa Coleman.

From Mrs. Mellisa Coleman.

Abidjan, Cote D'Ivoire.


I am Madam. Mellisa Coleman from Sierra-leone. the wife of Late Dr.Steven Coleman of blessed memory. My late husband was the chairman of Sierra Leonean Diamond Corporation.

My husband was killed along with my three children in our Freetown residence while I was out. They were assassinated by Unknown Gunmen that was sent by the Rebel leader, Now I am left with only my last son David.

I was terrified of the situation and because of this I escaped with my son David from Sierra - Leone to the neighbouring country which is Cote D'Ivoire.brought along the sum of u.s$12.5 million , in a metallic box and presently in a security company as family valuables.

My aim of contacting you is to seek for your able assistance as a front in transferring this fund abroad into an account , then as a business developer , you can help us to invest wisely in areas you deem lucrative and finally obtain a residential permit forus to stay comfortable in your country of abode.

Presently we are in refugee camp in Abidjan Cote D'Ivoire and we cannot go back to Sierra- Leone because of the situation there.

We are prepared to offer you 10% of the total funds for your able assistance and support and would send you proofs of the funds as soon as we favourably hear from you .Finally I implore you to treat this transaction with secrecy and confidentiality for security reasons .Thanking you in anticipation and God bless.
Mrs Mellisa Coleman.
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