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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: "Ambassador James Knight" <>
Date: Tue, 10 Jun 2014 10:17:06 -0700
Subject: Confirm your package arrival

Office: James A. Knight (Diplomat)
United States Ambassador to the Republic
Rue Caporal Bernard Anani-BP 2012, Cotonou Benin

Hours of Operation
Monday to Thursday:
8:00-12:30/1:30 - 5:00 P.M
Friday: 8:00 A.M. - 2:30P.M

Confirm your package arrival
Urgent please

This is to officially inform you that a sealed consignment box scheduled
for delivery to you with above deposit details was brought to our custody
here in American Embassy Cotonou, Republic of Benin by Courier Company
Director this morning for safe keeping and now waiting for your
confirmation before the final delivery will take place to your home town.

The consignment box in question contained $6.5Million and was brought to
the embassy here for safe keeping since it was intercepted by narcotic
agency due to unsecured shipping schedule.

Moreover, it's our responsibility to protect the interest of every good
citizen and will advice you to stop every further communication with any
correspondence from anywhere concerning this transaction because we have
finalized to deliver through our correspondent embassy in your country
pending your immediate response.

Also reconfirm below information as your present and direct contact upon
responding back to us avoiding wrongful delivery.

1. Your Full Name:
2. Current home address:
3. Direct phone Number's:
4. A Copy of Your International Passport or Driver's license for
Identification at point of collection

Once you notify us with above requirement, we shall schedule delivery of
your sealed box fund to your home address through our correspondent embassy
in your city and you will be contacted for personal collection at your door

Kindly send your response as soon as you read this message as I anticipate
your urgent respond.

Thanks & Sincerely Yours,

Email (
Ambassador James Knight
United States Ambassador to the Republic of Benin

Anti-fraud resources: