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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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Some comments by the Scam-O-Matic about the following email:

Fraud email example:

From: williams donald <>
Reply-To: <>
Date: Sat, 17 Nov 2007 15:50:11 +0100

FROM WILLIAMSMy name is Williams Donald the son of Late Chief Donald Michael the former Director General of theSieria Leone Diamond mining cooperation (SLDMC). I amcontacting you to seek your good assistance to transfer and invest USD 8,300,000.00 thousand belonging to my late father, which is deposited in one of the famous banks in Abidjan Cote D'Ivoire. This money is revenue from solid minerals and diamonds sales that were under my father’s possession before the civil war broke out in our country Sierra-Leone.Following the brake out of the war, almost all government offices, cooperation’s and parastatals were attacked and vandalized. The SLDMC was loathed and burnt down to ashes, and diamonds worth millions ofdollars was stolen by the rebel military forces that attacked our father's office. Many top government officials and senior army officers were assassinated and my father was a key target because of his very sensitive position and appointment in the SLDMC.Regrettably, my father was captured and murdered along with my half sister in cold blood during a mid-night rebel shoot-out when Fordey Sanko the notorious rebel leader ambushed our official residence in Freetown.My mother sustained severs bullet injuries that resulted to her untimely and painful death in a private hospital here in Ivory Coast. Now I am alone in a totally strange country without parents, relatives or any body to care for me at my tender age. Before my mother died, she told me that my late father deposited the sum of usd8, 300,000.00 that was made from diamond sales and contracts in a bank here in Ivory Coast where I am presently residing and that Ishould pray and find A trustworthy foreign partner who would help me totransfer and invest this money in profitable business ventures overseas. She told me to do this quickly so that I can leave Ivory Coast, then settle down abroad.She gave me all the bank documents to prove the deposit and then told me that my late father used my name (Williams Donald) as the only son to deposit the money in the bank here. She told me that this is the reason why we came to Ivory Coast. My mother died afterwards. May her spirit rest in perfect peace.I have been to the bank to make inquires about this money and I spoke with the director of International remittance who assured me that everything is ok in their computers. I am 20years old and as such the director promised to help me.If you are willing to assist me, please let me know immediately through my private email address( and provide me with your information for the bank here to make the transfer:Please note that I have mapped out 15% for your noble assistance. I am interested in any profitablecommercial venture that you consider very good in your country and you would also get a school for me where Ican complete my education.Thank you and God bless you and your dear family. As Ilook forward for your urgent response.Best Regards,Williams Donald.
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