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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: "BARRISTER. MUSTAPHA BENSON" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Thu, 10 Mar 2011 11:53:37 +0100


Note: Forward your response to this email address

Dear Sir/Madam,

I apologize if the contents hereunder are contrary to your moral ethics. But please treat with absolute secrecy and personal.

I am Barrister.Mustapha Benson a solicitor at law, I am the Personal Attorney to Mr.David Brumley a nationality of your country, who lived in Nigeria for nineteen years, and who until his demise was my client based on engagement entered into with my chambers in 1985.

The said deceased, who is hereafter referred to as my client passedaway with his family in an auto crash here in Nigeria some years back. He was a Contractor to an Oil Company (Shell Petroluem). He had an account valued at US$11,500,000.00(Eleven Million fIVE Hundred Thousand U.S Dollars) which has been dormant and unclaimed due to unavailability of a next of kin/relatives to claim his money.

In accordance with the escheat laws of Nigeria, the Board Of Directors of the Bank met a forth night ago and resolved to turn the estate of the deceased over to the Government having waited for too long without the deceased relatives/next of kin surfacing. And if this is done,invariably the funds will end up becoming Government property. It is as a result of this, that I am moved to contact you considering the fact if you can be or you are the next of kin to the deceased. Note that, all legal documentations to back up your claim as the deceased Next of Kin, will be available by my chambers as witness to your status as bonafide inheritor.

In view of this, I am seeking for your co-operation and understanding to stand as the deceased next of kin to enable us claim the inheritance before the time period given by the Bank elapse. If you are interested and in agreement with me, please write back immediately for more details.

I need you to send me the following informations that will be used to secure all legal documents that will back us up in this transaction.

1.Your Full Names
2.Your Phone/ Fax Numbers
3.Your Contact Address.

Be rest assured that it is a risk free project and the proceeds will be shared 50% each once the funds are repatriated into your account either in the United States or elsewhere. Once again, I will
use my position to obtain the relevant papers that will prove you the bonafide beneficiary of this
fund which will also protect you from any breach of the law.

Get back to me through my email address :

Yours in Legal Service.

Barrister. Mustapha Benson{San}
Mustapha Benson Chambers

Anti-fraud resources: