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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: "Christopher Marshall" <>
Date: Sat, 21 Jun 2008 14:22:30 +0100
Subject: From United Kingdom.

I sincerely hope that this letter will not come to you as a surprise or an
embarrassment since we neither knew each other before nor had any neither
previous correspondence nor contact. Do accept my sincere apologies if my
mail does not meet your personal ethics although, I wish to use this medium
to get in touch with you first because it's fastest means. I believe it will
be a surprise to you as we have never met before, and I am deeply sorry if I
have in any manner disturbed your privacy. Please forgive this unusual
manner of contacting you. Let me start by introducing myself.

My name is Dr. Christopher C. Marshall; I was into currency exchange
business, a British national from United Kingdom. I have been diagnosed with
Oesophageal cancer. It has defied all forms of medical treatment, and right
now I have only about a few months to live, according to medical experts. I
have not particularly lived my life so well, as I never really cared for
anyone (not even myself) but my business. Though I am very rich, I was never
generous, I was always hostile to people and only focused on my business as
that was the only thing I cared for. But now I regret all this as I now know
that there is more to life than just wanting to have or make all the money
in the world. I believe when God gives me a second chance to come to this
world I would live my life a different way from how I have lived it. Now
that God has called me, I have willed and given most of my property and
assets to my immediate and extended family members as well as a few close
friends .I want God to be merciful to me and accept my soul so, I have
decided to give alms to charity organizations, as I want this to be one of
the last good deeds I do on earth. So far,

I have distributed money to some charity organizations in the U.A.E, Somalia
and Malaysia. Now that my health has deteriorated so badly, I cannot do this
myself anymore. I once asked members of my family to close one of my
accounts and distribute the money which I have there to charity organization
in Bulgaria and Pakistan; they refused and kept the money to themselves.
Hence, I do not trust them anymore, as they seem not to be contended with
what I have left for them. The last of my money which no one knows of is the
huge cash deposit of Two Million dollars ($2,000,000.00) that I have with
financial institution abroad. I will want you to help me collect this
deposit and dispatch it to charity organizations. Please kindly note that
upon the receipt of these funds from the financial institution abroad, you
shall invest it in your line of business and dispatch the profit to
charitable home. As soon as i receive your response, I shall communicate
with you, and let you know the details of the transfer. Whatever your
actions and your decision, I thank you for taking the time to read this


Dr. Christopher C. Marshall

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