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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:

From: "Nelson Donell" <>
Date: Mon, 19 Sep 2005 18:12:38 -0400
Subject: Dear Friend,

Dear Friend,

I Am Mr.Nelson Donell the Manager, Bills And Exchange at the Foreign
Remittance Department Of The Cometh International Bank Plc, Lagos
Branch. I got your contact from the world trade center (WTC) Regional
office in Lagos, Nigeria. Although the details of my intention was not
made known to them. Actually, I listed your name amongst four other
names & prayed over them & decided to contact you directly. I have a
very urgent & confidential Business Proposition for you & for our
overall mutual interest. On the 11th of September 2001, our Customer,
a Mexican National, late Engr. Carlos Montoya, an Oil Merchant /
Contractor with the Federal Government of Nigeria, deposited ,a valued
amount of US$9Million in my branch.Upon maturity, i sent a routine
notification to his forwarded address but got no reply. After a month
we sent a reminder, & finally we discovered from his contract
employers NNPC, that late Engr. Carlos Montoya until his death Four
years ago in a ghastly terrorist attack to American Airlines Flight
11, from Boston, Massachusetts, to Los Angeles, California, crashed
into the North Tower of the World Trade Centre (WTC) with 86 people on

All occupants of the Aero plane unfortunately lost their lives. On
further investigation, I found out that he did not leave a WILL & all
attempts to trace his Next of kin were fruitless. I therefore made
further investigation & discovered that late Engr. Carlos Montoya did
not declare any Next of kin in all his official documents, including
his bank deposit paperwork. This sum US$9Million is still floating in
the bank and the interest is being rolled over with the principal sum
at the end of each year. No one will come forward to claim it.
According to Nigerian Laws, at the expiration of 7 years, the money
will revert to the Ownership of the Nigerian Government if nobody
applies to claim the funds. Consequently, my proposal is that i will
like you as a foreigner to stand in as a Next of kin of late Engr.
Carlos Montoya. This is simple.

All I require is your honest and co-operation to enable us see this
deal through. I guarantee that this will be executed under a
legitimate arrangement that will protect you from any breach of the
law. I will want you to send to me on your return email the following
information for the transfer in your favor.

1. Your full names as the Beneficiary of the Fund.
2. Your contact address.
3. Your private phone and fax numbers we will be communicating to each
other and as soon as I received I will definitely call you.

Lets consider that our ratio of sharing will be as stated Thus;
1. I as the Originator of the Fund will take 60% of the transferable
2. You as the Manager of the Fund will take 30% of the transferable
3. The remaining 10% will be use as Tax and other necessary expense
that will be incur as a result of transferring the Fund.

Most importantly, CONFIDENTAILITY as what I saw as the life wire to
the success of the transfer of this Fund must have to be emulated
between you and me. You have to use this media to promise me that you
will not in anyway expose the content of this transaction to anybody
be it your Friends, Colleagues and Co-Workers to enumerate a fee. With
the act of emulating CONFIDENTIALITY I tell you that the sky will be
our limit as soon as this Fund is transferred in our favor as you the
Beneficiary of the Fund.

I will also want you to send your reply to this email
( as soon as you get this mail to enable
us discuss on the modalities and processes for success of this

Thanks for your anticipated cooperation and understanding.

I wait for your kind response. Remain blessed.

Mr.Nelson Donell.

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