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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: "DR. GEORGE ADAMS" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Sun, 19 May 2013 12:50:06 -0000

Dear Friend,

I am obliged to inform you that I have succeeded in receiving the funds valued $12.5M through the help of my new business partner from Bulgaria. I have already left to meet him for our investment.

Meanwhile, I do not forget your past effort though it did not workout with you. I deem it necessary to issue a cheque Valued one Million Five Hundred Thousand United States Dollars only (US$1.5M) which can be collected at any bank of choice from ZENITH BANK PLC in your favor as your compensation for your past effort even though it did not workout.

I did this simply to show appreciation for your kind support and assistance even though we could not succeed due to negative information which you received at the time about the transaction was about to be concluded. Presently, I am in Sofia, Bulgaria for investment projects with my own share on the advice of my new partner.

In the light of the above, you are therefore advised to contact my Secretary, Rev. Valentin Justin and do ask him for your Cheque valued US$1.5M.

Name: Rev. Valentin Justin

Please do inform me as soon as you receive it so that we can share the joy together after all the suffering at that time. At the moment, I am very busy here in Sofia, the capital city of Bulgaria because of the investment projects.

So feel free to get in touch with him to send the cheque to you without further delay.

With My Best Regards,
Dr.George Adams.

Anti-fraud resources: