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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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Fraud email example:

Date: Mon, 6 Dec 2004 23:57:26 +0100

Dear ,

How are you doing? I hope all is well with you?

It is with heavy heart I am writing this letter to you
considering what I am going through at the moment, I
would have reached you earlier than now but my
incarceration since the death of my husband in 1998
made it impossible, this informs this late effort and
it has the consent of my Lawyer.

I am sure you are aware of the present Nigerian
Government?s attack on our humble family since the
demise of my husband (Gen. Sani Abacha) former Head of
State of Nigeria, these witch hunting attacks have
reached the point of confiscating all our assets,
properties and indeed the freezing of our Accounts
both within and outside the country.

It may also interest you to know that my first son
(Mohammed) has been in detention for over a year on
trump-up charges without bond. In fact, it is because
of all these and also not being sure of the
government?s next move that I humbly count on your
help to arrange for the relocation of some of our
family funds.

In view to arrange for this I have personally mandated
WILSON A MADU(Our family lawyer) who is assisting me
on many issues including the suit against the
government on our seized properties and frozen
accounts to act on my behalf. He therefore has the
full power of attorney to execute this transaction on
my behalf.

My Late Husband told me and also confirmed that he has
$31.5.Million specially packed in two metal trunk
boxes deposited with a Security Company in here in

It is this money that I want you to assist me in
claiming before the government gets to know about it
and confiscates it as with our other assets. I hope
you will not disappoint me. I and my sons have agreed
to reward you with 20% of the total sum should you
agree to this request.

As soon as i hear from you i will give you our family lawyer's
contact so that he will give you all the details on what to do.

N/B: This transaction is highly confidential and is
purely based on trust.

I will Inform our family lawyer WILSON A MADU to
expect your immediate response as soon as i hear from you..


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