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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: "AA Ashley Consultants Ltd." <>
Reply-To: <>
Date: Sun, 4 Jul 2010 19:30:20 +0200
Subject: Please Clarify

My name is Mary Anne Macari; I work with AA Ashley Consultants Ltd in England.
This is a standard process investigation concerning a client who shares the same name with you and the
circumstances surrounding investments made by this client.
The aforementioned client had investments with Lloyds TSB Private Banking Ltd, unfortunately, he died intestate.
The purpose of this communication with you is to inquire about the following;

1 - Do you have any relative whose last known contact
address was Brussels Belgium?
2 - If yes, are you aware of any investment of considerable
value made by such a person at Lloyds TSB Private Banking
3 - If yes to both of the above, can you establish beyond
reasonable doubt your eligibility to assume status of next
of kin to the deceased?

It is pertinent that you inform us whether or not you are familiar with this personality to enable us conclude our investigation.
Thank you for accommodating our inquiries.

Yours sincerely,
Ms. Mary Anne Macari
AA Ashley Consultants Ltd.
For: Lloyds TSB Private Banking Ltd.

Anti-fraud resources: