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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: mrs_helen johnson <>
Reply-To: mrs_helen johnson <>
Date: Thu, 18 Dec 2014 18:11:58 +0000 (UTC)
Subject: God bless you my dear

 God bless you  my  dear,

My name is Mrs. Helen Baines Johnson from France and I am very sorry for the attachment, I am a 59 years old woman. I was married to late Mr. Johnson who is my husband, and also one of the best contractors here in France, and also a seasoned contractor in London. He was poison to die on, 7th July 2013 by one of his friends in London.

My late husband and I were married for years without a child of our own and after his death I decided not to re-marry or get a child outside my matrimonial home. As i speak to you, I have been diagnosed with congested heart failure, of which the doctors have confirmed and told me that I would not live long. After my husband passed away last year, I realized he deposited a huge sum of money with one of Security Company in London.

The money that was deposited in the Security company was a total of (5.5000.000.00 USD) Five million Five Hundred Thousand US Dollars. As I write to you, I feel that the money in the Security company would be a waste if I die and that is why I have come to a conclusion of donating the money out to the less privilege and also the motherless babies home.

My husband's brother is an addicted smoker and drinker who spend his money on expensive drinks and unnecessary things and so I do not wish for him to have any of the money which my husband worked so hard for all his life. After going through your profile over the internet I decided to contact you for friendship and assistance for distribution of my inheritance. Please, my dear friend I have come to you to help me carry out this last wish of mine earth because I am too weak to move about and also have been confined to a wheel chair in my home in France due to the state of my health and so I can't travel all the way from here.

It is true that I don't know you, but I have been directed by God to do this. If you wish to help me, write back to me at your earliest convenience so that I would direct you on how to contact the Security Company for the transfer of the funds to you in whichever way you may wish to nominate for this purpose. Please send me your name, address, occupation, age, sex, marital status and contact telephone numbers to enable me forward it to the security company for the release of the fund to your custody. I will give you my lawyer contact information in London for I may not be able to carry this out myself, I am weak less privileged talk or write much.

I await your urgent reply.

Thanks for your kindness and God Bless you,

Yours Sincerely,
Mrs. Helen Baines Johnson.

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