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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. Matthew Leonard" <>
Reply-To: "Dr. Matthew Leonard" <>
Date: Mon, 6 Oct 2014 04:04:46 +0000 (UTC)
Subject: Dear beneficiary

Dear beneficiary

Good day, regarding immediate transfer of all foreign fund of $950, 000.00 Nine hundred and fifty thousand united state dollars and after haven a meeting yesterday with American government/EU respectively MR PRESIDENT have directed that for easy transfer of all foreign fund that all the foreign beneficiary must obtain {PRESIDENTIAL WAIVER CERTIFICATE} so that all the fee associated with your fund will be waiver out and transfer funds without delay.

This PRESIDENTIAL WAIVER CERTIFICATE will cost you sum of US$30 only as a result I advise you to go ahead and send the US$30 immediately you received this mail to enable us effect your first of us$5,000.00 daily without delay.

For this reason, urgently arrange to secure and send the US$30 dollars for the {PRESIDENTIAL WAIVER CERTIFICATE} via Money Gram or Western Union with the understated wiring details:

Receiver name / EKENE NWAKU
Country / Benin Republic
Zip Code / 229
Text question/ COLOR
Answer / GREEN

After paying the fee, send the following payment information:

REFERENCE #: ------

Finally, as soon as I confirm the payment details your fund will be transfer without delay, you should forward the payments details to avoid mistakes to affect your first of us$5,000.00 daily payable to you in any MONEY GRAM agent locations in your state immediately as we are instructed to precede your transfer.

Thanks for your co-operation. We look forward to serving you better.

Dr. Matthew Leonard
TELEPHONE # +22998333967

Anti-fraud resources: