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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, 19 Sep 2005 23:22:57 +0000


My name is Mrs. MARTHA PUJEH, from Diamond rich country district of Bombali
in Northern Province of Sierra Leone. I am the widow of the Late Mr.MOMOH
PUJEH, the managing director of Sierra Leone diamond mining co-operation and
transport minister. I am currently living in a refugee center in London, UK.
My family and I have been unfortunate to find ourselves caught up in a very
difficult situation in London. I know you will be surprise to receive this
message, but it is of utmost importance to me and my family.

Anyway, I am about to entrust my destiny and the destiny of my whole
dependants on your shoulder if you can help us, it will also be of immense
benefit to you too. This transaction demands utmost trust, honesty,
integrity and most important, secrecy. It is only through the above that my
family and I will be assured of our security. This regrettable situation led
to the killing of my husband and only daughter and the displacement of my

During the brutal civil war in my country Sierra Leone, my late husband of
blessed memory was brutally murdered by the rebels led by Mr. Foday Sankoh,
he was murdered with my only daughter (Nina). But my two sons (Greg &
Daniel) and I managed to escape to UK, through the help of
the International Rescue Committee (IRC).But before my late husband's death,
he drew my attention to a box containing about twelve million US dollars
($12 Million) which he smuggled out at the start of the war to a firm
company in Spain. He registered it in the name of my son Greg
Pujeh as family art and monuments) He also gave me the certificate of
deposit and receipt issued to him by the security company, which I still
have in my possession. The problem I have is that as a refugee, the
immigration law does not allow us to open or hold operate bank account in
London and I do not want to seek the assistance of just anybody for fear of
being duped or
defraud of our only livelihood, I have sold almost all my jewelries to keep
body and soul together, hence the British Government is not really taking
care of us.

What is required of you is to give us your full name, telephone and fax
numbers and contact address so that I can secure a Power of Attorney in your
favor that would enable you contact the financial company as the beneficiary
of the box. You can then transfer the funds to your bank
account after the box must have been released to you. In order to make it
worthwhile, we will give you part of the money. We have also map out 5% of
the principal sum for any expenses that you may incurred during the
transaction process which includes your traveling expenses, we intend
to invest the remaining part of the money on your advice in any lucrative
business ventures in your country.If you want to help, you can contact my
son Greg Pujeh who recently got a job in one of the local firms here in
London on his email address:( I am looking forward to
your immediate response, as I believe that destiny has brought us together.

Yours Faithfully,

Mrs. Martha Pujeh

Please visit the following web pages for further information on the
Sierra Leone war.

Anti-fraud resources: