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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: "Excellency Lionel Zinsou" (may be fake)
Reply-To: <>
Date: Mon, 23 May 2016 22:31:34 -0700
Subject: Office of the Presidency

Office of the Presidency
Rue 1132, Constitution Avenue
Zone A1 Central Area
P. M.B 535, Cotonou-Benin,

To your Attention Sir,

I am the Prime Minister of Benin Republic. With reference to my effort to
reach you via telephone call, I delighted to inform you that I am the last
signatory to your UNRESOLVED fund. This fund supposes to be in your position
long ago but you did not follow the normal process by obtaining the TC1 FORM
from this office.

Consequently with out the presidential endorsement from the president of this
country Dr. Patrice Talon no body will release your fund to you, that is
the problem you have been having with all the people you are following.

Your payment file has been APPROVED authoritatively and the comment status here
stated that you are a good person and supposed to receive your payment long ago
but know one tell you the truth or the normal step to follow to receive your

Now declare how you will like to receive your fund and arrange on how to obtain
TC1-Form from the office of the presidency.

This TC1-Form is to enable the president of Benin Republic Dr. Patrice Talon
endorse your payment file and your payment will be paid with immediate effect
via any means of your choice.

Get back to me with your direct mobile phone to enable me proceeds with your
payment file.

Meanwhile you are advice to stop any communication from whose ever is
contacting you about your fund. Any email you received forward it to me for
proper investigation.

His Excellency, Lionel Zinsou
Prime Minister Benin Republic

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Anti-fraud resources: