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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: stella kofi <steko70@msn.com>
Reply-To: <stkofi5@yahoo.com>
Date: Sun, 4 Jan 2009 00:12:40 +0000
Subject: Hi Dear



Hi DearMiss Stella Kofi. Abidjan Cote D'IvoireWest Africa Good DayPermit me to inform you of my desire of going into business relationship with you.I am the only Daughter of my late parents Mr.and Mrs.Ken C, Kofi, My father was a highly reputable business magnate who operated in the capital city of Ivory coast during his days. It is sad to say that he passed away mysteriously in France during one of his business trips abroad three years ago. Though his sudden death was linked or rather suspected to have been masterminded by an uncle of his who travelled with him at that time. My uncle just because of acquiring his wealth and he tried to kill me before i ran away from our own house to where i am presently staying with one old widow woman that i knew from our church where i use to attend as a choir leader or thou shetook me as her own daughter. My mother died when I was just 6yrs old, and since then my father took me so special. Before his death , he called me and informed me that he has the sum of Five Million, Seven Hundred thousand United State Dollars.(USD$5,700,000.00)left in fixed deposit account in one of the leading banks in Africa. He further told me that he deposited the money in my name, and also gave me all the necessary but legal documents to this fund with the bank. I am just 21 years old and a university undergraduate and really don't know what to do. Now I want an account overseas where I can transfer this funds and after the transaction I will come and reside permanently in your country till such a time that it will be convinient for me to return back home if I so desire. This is because I have suffered a lot of set backs as a result of incessant political crisis here in Ivory coast. The death of my father actually brought sorrow to my life. I also want to invest the fund under your care because I am ignorant of business world. I will also want you To make arrangement for me to come over to your country in order to further my university education and to secure a residential permit for me in your country. Moreover , l am willing to offer you 20% of the total sum as compensation for your assistance in the transfer of this deposit to your country. Furthermore, you can indicate your option towards assisting me as I believed that this project would be concluded within seven days you signify interest to assist me by contacting the bank. I am in a sincere desire of your humble assistance in this regards. Your suggestions and ideas will be highly regarded. Now permit me to ask these few questions: 1. Can you honestly help me from your heart? 2. Can I completely trust you? 3. What percentage of the total amount in question will be good for you after the money is in your account? Please, consider this and get back to me as soon as possible. Immedaitely I confirm your willingness, I will send to you more details involved in this matter. Kind Regards, Miss Stella Kofi

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