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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: "tom hickman white" <>
Date: Wed, 3 Sep 2008 07:07:36 -0700
Subject: Good Day,

Good Day,

This is a personal official email directed to you and me request that it be
treated as such.

I am Barrister Tom W. Hickman, A solicitor at law. I am the personal
attorney/sole executor to my late Client (Name Withheld), hereinafter
referred to as my client' who worked as an independent oil magnate in my
Country and who died in a car crash with his immediate family On the 4th of
Oct, 1998.

Since the death of my client in Oct, 1998, I have written several Letters to
the embassy with intent to locate any of his extended Relatives whom shall
be claimants/beneficiaries of his abandoned personal estate and all such
efforts have been to no avail.

More so, I have received official letters in the last few weeks suggesting a
likely proceeding for confiscation of his abandoned personal assets in line
with existing laws by the bank in which my client deposited the sum of $13.8
million U.S.D

On this note I decided to search for a credible person and finding that you
bear a similar last name, I was urged to contact you, that I may, with your
consent, present you to the "trustee" bank as my late Client's surviving
family member so as to

enable you put up a claim To the bank in that capacity as a next of kin of
my client.

I find this possible for the fuller reasons that you bear a similar last
name with my client making it a lot easier for you to put up a Claim in that
capacity. I propose that 45% of the net sum will accrue to you at the
conclusion of this deal in so far as I do not incur further expenses.

Therefore, to facilitate the immediate transfer of this fund, you need,
First to contact me via email signifying your interest and as soon as I
obtain your confidence; I will immediately appraise you with the complete
details as well as fax you the documents, with which you are to proceed and
I shall direct on how to put up an application to the bank.

Upon the receipt of your reply, I will send you by fax or E-mail the next
step to take. I will not fail to bring to your notice that this proposal is
hitch-free and that you should not entertain any fears as the required
arrangements have been made for the completion of this transfer. Like I
said, I require only a solemn confidentiality on this.
Send me your Full Names and Address and phone number on your next respond

Best regards,
Tom W. Hickman QC (Hon.)

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