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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: "Capt William Johnson" <>
Reply-To: <>
Date: Sat, 14 May 2011 23:04:05 +0200
Subject: Can you be trusted?

Dear Friend,

With trust, I faithfully write to you as i know this mail will definitely come to you as a huge surprise, but I implore you to take the time to go through it carefully as the decision you make will go a long way to determine the future of my business prospect with you.

Meanwhile let me briefly introduce myself to you as I write to you this email with a high sense of sincerity, trust and as my confidant.I am Captain William Johnson from the hospitality state (Mississippi). I am an army contractor to the US; we are in Iraq for the sole purpose of reconstruction work in some parts of the States where building construction is going on. As you well know, the Us government has withdrew the combat soldiers out of Iraq but the building construction which is supervised by the Us Army contractors is still going on. Iraq is gradually undergoing a rebuilding process in some parts and there is much need for reconstruction, which is where I come in. I evaluate the level of destruction and offer professional advice in line with the way they intend rebuilding.

Work has been so risky no doubt, and challenging as sometimes, we are faced head with armed insurgent where we lose some soldiers during confrontation. I have had my own share of losses as I lost a friend whom I have known for 12 years.

On the 4th day of december 2010,at about 1100hrs during one of our normal inspection routine along Haifa Street, where there is long thoroughfare of high-rise buildings which were built and occupied by the late Saddam Hussein while he was still alive. I, along with 3 soldiers proceeded to a marked site and as I commenced evaluation work where we went, we discovered an unusual bulge in a cellar, which I presumed to be a storage room and I decided to go have a look at it, when i got there i discovered five(5) metal boxes piled on top one another which were locked with a padlock each.

While we tried to force the box open, To my greatest surprise I discovered several guns, armor and amongst, two boxes contained bullets, one filled with hard drugs (heroin)and the other two to my amazement contained some US Dollars which amounted to $23.5M after I and two of my colleagues counted them for several hours. I believed that the boxes are owned or are linked to the Al Qaeda and Adman al-Zawahiri.

Having told you this as my confidant, it will be my delight and pleasure if you will assist me towards actualizing my dream with this development. Unanimously, we agreed to keep this as a secret among ourselves, and agreed to get the money out of the country for ourselves but first, we have hidden the two boxes that containing the US dollars in a safe and untraced location already. Now, I DESPERATELY in need of a “RELIABLE and TRUSTWORTHY” person who would receive, secure and safe guard these box containing the US dollars for me on till my assignment elapses.

I am aware of what your thoughts would be next but don’t conclude that yet because I am willing to guard and give you every logistics plans to follow in order to have hitched free in this deal. Also, I am not from any authority that would want to set you up just that I need your help and I assure you that this deal is 100% risk free.

My proposal to you is, if you are willing to help me receive the boxes (Money) you will be entitled to 30% of this fund in the end; Once again, I confide strictly in you and appeal that you keep this topmost secret so that we do not lose our job.

Please kindly get back to me on my private email address

With the assurances of my gratitude and compliance to the terms, I remain;

Very sincerely,

Capt.William Johnson

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