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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: "US. SGT GOODSON PETERS" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Wed, 19 Aug 2009 06:32:10 +0400

my good friend,
my good friend, my name is (sgt 1st class) peters, serving in the military with the army's 3rd infantry division in iraq. im with a desperate need for your assistance; i found your contact particulars in a journal.
i am seeking your kind assistance to move some amount of money to a safe part of the country as far as i can be assured that the money will be safe in your care until i complete my service here in iraq,
we can personally discuss this in private through email.
source of money:
some money in various currencies (amounting to $9.8 million dollars was recovered in one of saddams palaces in tikrit-iraq during a rescue operation, and it was agreed by staff sgt kenneth buff and i that some
part of this money be shared among both of us before informing anybody about it since both of us saw the money first. this was quite an illegal thing to do i agree, but i tell you what? no compensation can make
up for the risk we have taken with our lives in this hell hole called iraq. my brother in-law was killed by a road side bomb early this year. the money was discovered in barrels.
the above figure was given to me as my share, and to conceal this kind of huge amount of money has became a problem for me, so with the help of a united nations commandant who is in charge of the relieve and
diplomatic delivery section, his office enjoys some immunity. i was able to get the package out to a safe location entirely out of trouble spot. he does not know the real contents of the package, and believes that it
belongs to a british american medical doctor who died in a cross fire here in iraq, and before giving up, trusted me to hand over the package to his family back home. i have now found a much secured way of getting
the package out of iraq to some one i can trust to pick up via united nations diplomatic delivery service, and i will discuss this with you when i am sure that you are willing to assist me, and i believe that my money
will be well secured in your hand because you have the fear of god.
i tell you; what ever money spent on this will be taken off from my own share as soon as the box arrives. kindly tell me how much you will take from this money for the assistance i need from you. one passionate
appeal i will make to you is not to discuss this matter with anybody, should you have reasons to reject this offer, please and please destroy this message as any leakage of this information will be too bad for us
soldier's serving here in iraq.
i do not know how long we will remain here.
i honestly want this matter to be resolved immediately, please contact me as soon as possible, this is my only way of communication, no telephone number and postal address, so you can kindly contact me through
my personal email address. i will try and get back to you, because of the nature of the problem here in iraq.
remain blessed,
yours brother,
sgt. peters.

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