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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: Sun, 22 May 2005 18:18:24 +0100
Subject: =?iso-8859-1?Q?Your=20Kind=20Assistance=20Will=20Be=20Appreciated?=

From: Williams Koulibaly
Tel: +225 07 71 17 19.
Abidjan - Cote d'Ivoire
West - Africa.

Dear Friend,

I am writing to intimate you of a matter that requires
your urgent assistance.

I am Williams Koulibaly, the only son of late Mr.and Mrs.
Benard Koulibaly. My father was a very wealthy cocoa
merchant in Abidjan, the economic capital of Ivory
Coast, my father was poisoned to death by his business
associates in one of their outings on a business trip.

My mother died when I was a baby and since then, my
father took me so special. Before the death of my
father on June 2003 in a private hospital here in
Abidjan, he secretly called me on his bedside and told
me that he has the sum of Eighteen Million, Five
Hundred Thousand US Dollars (US$18,500,000) left in a fixed/
suspense account in one of the Prime Banks here in
Abidjan, that he used my name as his only son for the
next of kin in depositing the fund. He also
explained to me that it was because of his wealth
that he was poisoned by his business associates. That
I should seek for a foreign partner in a country of my
choice where I will transfer this money and use it for
investment purpose such as real estate management or
hotel management.

As it stands now, I am asking your assistance in the
following ways:

1) To serve as a guardian of this fund.

2) To make arrangement for me to come over to your
country to further my education and to secure a
resident permit for me in your country.

Moreover, I am willing to offer you 15% of the
total sum as compensation for your effort/input after
the successful transfer of this fund into your
nominated account overseas and 5% has been ear-marked
to take care of expenses at the end of the transfer.

Furthermore, you indicate your options towards
assisting me as I believe that this transaction would
be concluded within (14) days you signify your
interest to assist me. Please NO OBLIGATION.

Anticipating To Hear From You Soon.

Thanks and God bless!

Williams Koulibaly
Tel: +225 07 71 17 19.

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