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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: "ali mustapha" <>
Date: Wed, 23 Jul 2008 08:46:38 +0200
Subject: My dear Friend,

*My dear Friend,

I am Ali Mustapha, the manager of bill and exchange at the foreign remittance
department of Bank of Africa. In my department we discovered an abandoned sum
of US$12.2M (twelve million, two hundred thousand US dollars) in an account
that belongs to one of our foreign customer who died along with his entire
family in August 17, 1999 earth quake in Izmir, Turkey.

Since we got information about his death, we have been expecting his next of
kin to come over and claim his money because we cannot release it unless some
body applies for it as next of kin or relation to the deceased as indicated in
our banking guidelines and laws but unfortunately we learning that all his
supposed next of kin or relation died alongside with him in the earth quake
leaving nobody behind for the claim.

It is therefore upon this discovery that I now decided to make this business
proposal to you and for the bank to
release the money to you if you will follow instructions, to be the next of
kin or relation to the deceased for safety and subsequent disbursement since
nobody is coming for it and I don't want this money to go into the bank
treasury as unclaimed bill. The banking law and guidelines here stipulates that
if such money remained unclaimed after Ten years,the money will be transferred
into the bank treasury as unclaimed bill.

The request of foreigner as next of kin in this business is occasioned by the
fact that the customer was a foreigner and an indigene cannot stand as next of
kin to a foreigner.

I agree that 45% of this money will be for you as respect to the provision of a
foreign account, 5% will be set aside for expenses incurred during the business
and 50% be for me.

Thereafter, I will visit your country for disbursement according to the
percentage indicated. Therefore, to enable the immediate transfer
of this fund to you as arranged, you must apply first to the bank as relation
or next of kin of the deceased indicating your bank name, your bank account
number, your private telephone and fax number for easy and effective
communication and location where the money will be transfer to you.

Upon receipt of your reply, I will send to you by fax or email the text of the
application. I will not fail to bring to your notice that this transaction is
hitch-free and that you should not entertain any atom of fear as all required

Thanks and God bless.
Yours sincerely,
Mr Ali Mustapha*

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