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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: "Mrs. Mary Pete" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Tue, 13 Apr 2010 21:11:36 +0530
Subject: I have chosen you for Inheritance to help the poor

Good day,

Please excuse this humble email if it offends your sensibilities, but I have no
other means to contact you. I cannot talk on the telephone, so I did a search
for your email address, which I found on the International Business Directorate
Email Data Search. My name is Mrs. M Pete, I'm a 52 years old woman.

I am a widow who is dying of oesophageal cancers. I was married to
Donald Pete, who was an Executive of Shell Oil Company. We are both
British people who worked in South Africa until he was killed. Presently, I'm
in a hospital where I have been undergoing treatment for Cancer in South Africa.

I have in a security firm the sum of 10,000,000.00GBP (Ten Million Great Britain
Pound Sterling) which my husband deposited before he died in a tragic automobile
accident where he was killed instantly. Because my doctors informed that I have
several weeks to live I must find a good God fearing person who will see that my
money is used for the benefit of the less privileged like homeless orphans and
motherless babies.

I have decided to seek your help in carrying out my last wishes, I have since lost
my ability to talk and my doctors have told me that I have only few weeks to live,
It is my last wish to see this money distributed.

My research says you are just the person I seek. Because you have been found
#so trustworthy, I will like you to keep 15% for yourselves and give the rest to
worthy charity. Maybe you could start the Donald Pete Foundation which will
keep my husband name alive.

My relatives and friends have plundered so much of my wealth since my illness,
I cannot live with the agony entrusting this huge responsibility to any of them.

Be rest assured that I will sign the necessary Probate Documents to make you the
beneficiary. I will also ask a friend, hospital, attendant, Mr. Makolo to discuss with
you since I can no longer talk or lost my vocal system to give you the details
and bank where the money was deposited to avoid delay in transferring the money
to you now that I am still alive.

As soon as I receive your reply I shall give you the contact of the security
company in South Africa/ Germany and I will send authority letter that will
prove you the present beneficiary of the money in the finance company that
is if you assure me that you will act accordingly as I stated herein

1. Your Full Names
2. Your contact Address
3. Your Age
4. Your Marital Status
5. Your Occupation
6. Your Mobile Numbers and
7. Your Home Phone

Feel free to call Mr. Makolo and ask any question regarding this transaction
on phone no: on +27 785889966.

I am waiting for your response.please reply in my privat mail add via

Be Bless as you reply positively,
Remain Blessed,
Mrs M. Pete

Anti-fraud resources: