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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: "Charles Williams" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Wed, 29 Aug 2012 08:18:45 +0100


I am sorry I am writing you this mail, through this medium,please pardon me, it is due to the urgency.I am Charles Williams, a solicitor in the law
chambers of Mr.Bhadresh Gohil here in London UK.We handled financial transactions of a Governor in one of the Africa`s richest Oil producing states.
The deals which includes properties and Investments in UK and other places amounted to the tune of over $350m. Unfortunately, he fell out with some
people who exposed his transactions in UK and subsequently he was arrested in UAE and extradited to UK where he was tried and jailed for 13 years. My
senior partner, Mr. Bhadresh Gohil was also jailed for 10 years including others who are related to the Ex-Governor.

When this started, Mr. Gohil advised that we should move some of the funds and I was able to move just $15M before the police swooped on us and seized
everything including my traveling documents and placed some of us on surveillance. I left this fund in the care of an aide of a big contact because
they were in London at that time. Now, I am pleading with you to assist me in collecting this fund for investments which shall be managed by you based
on agreed terms and conditions.The fund was comfortably moved to Ghana and you will be required to visit Ghana for the collection.Please do not treat
this mail with levity, I hereby include a newspaper article on the issue so that you will understand. :
cashier-at-a-diy-store-who-became-745487. As soon as i receive your response, I will furnish you with all the necessary details.

Sincere Regards,

Charles Williams.

Anti-fraud resources: