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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: sanou_ amed033 <>
Reply-To: <>
Date: Fri, 21 Sep 2007 07:07:36 +0000
Subject: salam urgent reply needed call me 00226 76038363 i need your favour

My name is AMED SANOU. Sierra Leonean residing in burkina faso,West Africa.I am 22years old. You will be surprise to receive this mail from a total stranger like me,Anyway,i got your contact through internet in my search for honest person abroad who will assist me to invest my inherited fund abroad,this is why i decided to approach you for assistance. My father,the late,CHIEF ALI SANOU was one of the prominent Gold & Diamond dealers in my country Sierra Leone,he was also the traditional ruler of my home town before He was murdered in cold blood early last year alongside with my mother by the Rebels of R.U.F when they invaded my home town. When i got home from school to see the remains of my late father and other family members,i discovered that my home had been burnt down and my parents were both murdered by the Rebels of R.U.F that has been fighting against the legitimate Government in my country since 1999. My late father deposited the sum of(USD$4.5 million)as a FAMILY TREASURE IN A SECURITY COMPANY here in burkina faso,West Africa before his untimely death,this money was meant to be used to build an ultral mordern medical Clinic here in burkina faso,for me after i shall have completed my studies as a qualified Doctor but the untimely death of my parents have denied me this good opportunity. Now,as the next of kin and the only child,i have made claims of ownership of the box containing the money although the people at the Trust Company are not aware of the true contents of the box,But i need a reliable person outside Africa through whom i could move the money abroad and who will subsequently help me to invest the money wisely while i go back to school to complete my education. Bear in mind that i would entrust this money in your care if you would be willing to help me in this matter.I am also willing to give you 25% of the total sum if you will be willing to assist me in this matter. In addition,i will equally deduct 5% after the transfer to reimburse each party for the expenses that may be incurred in the course of moving the money into your country and you make it a private and confidential matter I look forward to hear from you soonest. SANOU AMED
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