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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.
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Fraud email example:
From: "Kenneth Johnson" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Thu, 10 Nov 2005 11:15:15 -0700
Subject: Good Relationship
MR. KENNETH JOHNSON
DATE: 10th November, 2005
Attn: Chief Executive Officer,
I am Mr. Kenneth Johnson, Bank Manager of Continental Merchant Bank of
Nigeria, Lagos Branch. I have urgent and very confidential business
proposition for you.
On October 6, 2001, an American Oil Consultant/Contractor with the Federal
Government of Nigeria, Mr Robert Noel made a numbered time (Fixed) Deposit
for twelve calendar months, valued at US$25,000,000.00 (Twenty-five Million
US dollars only) in my branch. Upon maturity, I sent a routine notification
to his forwarding address but got no reply. After a month, we sent a
reminder and finally we discovered from his contract employers, the Federal
Government of Nigeria that Mr. Robert Noel died from an automobile crash. On
Further investigation, I found out that he died without making a "WILL", and
all attempts to trace his next of kin was fruitless.
I therefore made further investigation and discovered that Mr. Robert Noel
did not declare any kin or relations in all his official documents,
including his Bank Deposit paperwork in my bank. This sum of
US$25,000,000.00 only is still sitting in my bank and the interest is being
rolled over with the principal sum at the end of each year. No one will ever
come forward to claim it. According to Nigeria Law, at the expiration of 5
(five) years, the money will revert to the ownership of the Nigeria
Government if nobody applies to claim the fund.
Consequently, my proposal is that I will like you to stand in as the next of
kin to Mr. Robert Noel so that the fruits of this old mans labour will not
get into the hands of some corrupt government officials. This is simple, I
will like you to provide immediately your full names and address so that the
Attorney will prepare the necessary documents and affidavits, which will put
you in place as the next of kin. We shall employ the serivce of two
Attorneys for drafting and notarization of the "WILL" and to obtain the
necessary documents and letter of robate/administration in your favour for
the transfer. A Bank account in any part of the world, which you will
provide, will then facilitate the transfer of this money to you as the
beneficiary/next of kin. The money will be paid into your account for us to
share in the ratio of 60% for me and 40% for you.
There is no risk at all as the paperwork for this transaction will be done
by the Attorney and my position as the branch Manager guarantee the
successful execution of this transaction. If you are interested, please
forward the information:- Your full name and address, occupation,age,direct
phone/mobiler number with your fax number. Reply immediately via the
private addresses below. Upon your response, I shall then provide you with
more details and relevant documents that will help you understand the
Please observe utmost confidentiality, and be rest assured that this
transaction would be most profitable for both of us because I shall require
your assistance to invest my share in your country.I will also like you to
contact me on my new email adddress: email@example.com for
I waiting your urgent reply.
Thanks and God Bless.
Mr. Kenneth Johnson