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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: Sophie Houngbedji <>
Date: Fri, 21 Feb 2014 20:03:59 +0100

>From Miss Sophie Houngbedji's
Cotonou Benin Republic
Carre 190 zone Des Ambassade
cotonou Benin

Dearest Beloved one ,

May l request for your assistance and also go into bussiness
pertnership with you , believing that you will not betray my trust
which i am going to lay on you. I am Miss Sophie Houngbedji 20years
old, the only child of my late parents MR. and MRS. Michel Houngbedji
My father was a highly reputable business magnet-(Gold merchant) who
operated in the capital of Benin republic during his days.It is sad to
say that he passed away mysteriously after one of his business trips
abroad 12th.Febuary 2012.Though his sudden death was linked or rather
suspected to have been masterminded by an uncle of his who travelled
with him at that time. But God knows the truth!.

My mother died when I was just 4 years old, and since then my father
took me so special. Before his death on February 12th 2012 he called
me secretly beside his bed at the hospital and revealed to me that he
has the sum of Fifteen Million five hundred thousand United State
Dollars.(USD$15.500 000)left in a security company contained in a
strong metallic trunk box, but the security company didn't know the
real content of the box till date,because it was registered as family
valuables personal for security reasons.

I am just 20years old and a university undergraduate and really don't
know what to do.This is because I have suffered a lot of set backs
since the death of my father, his death actually brought sorrow to my
life. Dearest, I am in a sincere desire of your humble assistance in
this regards to move this money to your country for a lucrative
business under your care,as l am very desperate to relocate to your
country and continue my education.Your suggestions and ideas will be
highly regarded.Please permit me to ask these few questions,

1. Can I completely trust you?
2. What percentage of the total amount in question will be good for you?
3. Promise me that this transaction will remain confidential between
you and me and you will never involve any third party
for security reasons?

Consider this and get back to me as soon as possible through this
email address (

My sincere regards,

Miss Sophie Houngbedji

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