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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: <>
Reply-To: <>
Date: Sat, 14 May 2011 23:54:27 -0700
Subject: Important Business Collaboration.

From: Gordon A Smith
Telephone: 0027-083 434 4043
Attention Sir,

May I first request respectfully that you keep the contents of this letter private and respect the integrity of the information you come by as a result of this letter even if you are not interested. I contact you independently and no one is informed of this communication except an aide to the deceased.

My name is Gordon A. Smith a banker with the audit department and also head of operations of a branch of a top UK bank-Barclays bank based in South Africa. In 2006, a client late Mr. Rajeev Uday came to our bank to engage in business discussions with our private banking division which I conducted the operations. He then started operating the account. He was a secret errand boy of the Libyan president-Muammar Gadhafi and he manages some of his (Gadhafi’s) properties and businesses in France, Italy, South Africa, Spain and the rest of the world.

To cut the long matter short, he has in the account a sum total of Seventeen Million Five Hundred and Twenty British pounds (£17,520,000.00) which I would like you to assist me to transfer out of this country because he is dead and there is no one to claim this money.
During the current crisis in Libya, he had told me that the president wanted him to take out some money bag and gold block to Saudi Arabia but because he was scared and respected the peoples wish he refused to embark on the journey and was therefore planning to escape to a nearby country where he was captured and killed with his family by Gadhafi’s aides whom the tyrant had sent to mount surveillance on him because of his disobedience to his wish.

The information of his death came to me as a huge shock and through his closest friend who is also part of this deal whom I just had a meeting with concerning this deal. However, there will be nobody of the deceased immediate family that can claim the money hence we seek your cooperation otherwise the country will confiscate the fund and turn it into the state treasury. For personal safety and surety I have personally called severally all his mobile telephone numbers even the house number but no response which clearly indicates that he was dead. I just wish his soul and that of his family a perfect rest.

It has become imperative that Gadhafi will be ousted but with a lot of bloodshed, I seek your help to carry out this operation, I shall do all the necessary inward arrangements to ensure that this transfer is successful to any of your nominated account around the world except the UK and America. I hold the KEY to these funds, and from my years as a banker, we see so much inflow and outflow of funds being re-assigned daily to state treasury when they are not claimed or when the owner is deceased and there is no one to claim them within a stipulated amount of time.

Please once again I send you this mail not without a measure of fear as to the consequences, but I know within me that nothing ventured is nothing gained and that success and riches never come easy or on a platter of gold. This is the one truth I have learned from my private banking clients and my dealing with top business men and women. Do not betray my confidence in you as I hope to meet you in person someday. If you are willing and ready to act on these, please we need to act swiftly before the bank authorities gets to know about the story behind the owner and confiscate it. Kindly call me on 0027-083434 4043, alternatively by my private address:

Finally we have agreed to give you 20% of the money which is about (£3.504, 000) for your assistance to us and we shall keep the remaining to ourselves at the end of the hopeful success of this transfer. Please bear in mind that they say “business is secret” so please respect my first paragraph of this email even if you are not interested but I urge you to make use of this opportunity.

I await your quick response,

Gordon Smith

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