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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: Barrister railwan Luckman <>
Reply-To: <>
Date: Wed, 14 Nov 2007 15:32:09 +0200
Subject: Urgent Attention Needed

Urgent Attention Needed Dear Friend,
I wish to accost you with a request that would be of immense benefit toboth of us. Being an executor of wills, it is possible that we may betempted to make fortune out of our client's situations, when we cannothelp it, or left with no better option. The issue I am presenting toyou is a case of my client who willed a fortune to his next-of-kin. Itwas most unfortunate that he and his next-of-kin died on the same day inthe Sharja plane crash of Tuesday 10 February 2004. I am now facedwith confusion of who to pass the fortune to. According to the English law, the fortune is supposed to be bequeathedto the government. However, I don't belong to that school of thoughtwhich proposes that the fortune of unlucky people be given to thegovernment.My purpose of contacting you is to seek your acting as thebeneficiary of the will, and lay claim the legacy of £12.4million, which thisunfortunate client of mine bequeathed to his next-of-kin. For now, Ialone know about his will, as my client has great confidence in me.
Everything will be left between you and I. The share would be 30% foryou and 70% for me.any expencence in this transaction would be takecare of as this is my primary objective. All I have to do is amend thewill to make you the beneficiary to the £12.4million legacy.
Again, I feel that you may apprehensive and consider this amount toobig for you to defend. It does not matter, as there are documents to backit up. This is a legacy being passed on to a next-of-kin. As I am notvery sure of getting your consent on the issue I prefer not to divulgemy full identity so as not to risk being disbarred. The English Barconsiders it a breach of the oath of the English Bar. I need not emphasizeto you that the sensitivity of this issue need not be toyed with byneglecting its confidentiality. I therefore appeal to you not discussthis request with anybody, even if you decline my request.
Until I am sure of your consent and full cooperation, I would preferthat we maintain correspondence by email. At this point I want to assureyou that your true consent, full cooperation and confidentiality areall that are required for us to take full advantage of this opportunity
I look forward to hearing from you soon.
Yours truly Barr. Railwan Luckman.

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