URGENT 'Nigeria-419' Scam from South Africa
Date: Friday, April 26 @ 12:00:00 CDT
Topic: spam, Skewered

Last month, the following email found its way into my inbox. After a quick read, I put it aside, for further research and write-up.

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Date: Fri, 26 Apr 2002 00:25:13 -0700 (PDT)
From: jubeeg venture <>
Subject: URGENT
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii



(RE: TRANSFER OF ($ 152,000.000.00 USD


Dear sir,

We want to transfer to overseas ($ 152,000.000.00
USD) One hundred and Fifty two million United
States Dollars) from a Prime Bank in Africa, I want
to ask you to quietly look for a reliable and
honest person who will be capable and fit to provide
either an existing bank account or to set up a new
Bank a/c immediately to receive this money, even an
empty a/c can serve to receive this money, as long as
you will remain honest to me till the end for this
important business trusting in you and believing in
God that you will never let me down either now or in
future. I am.Jubeeg Venture, the Auditor General of
prime banks in Africa, during the course of our
auditing I discovered a floating fund in an account
in the bank in 1990 and since 1993 nobody has
operated on this account again, after going through
some old files in the records I discovered that the
owner of the account died without a [heir] hence
the money is floating and if I do not remit this
money out urgently it will be forfeited for nothing.
the owner of this account is Mr. Allan P. Seaman, a
foreigner, and an industrialist, and he died,
since 1993. and no other person knows about this
account or any thing concerning it, the account has no
other beneficiary and my investigation proved to me as
well that Allan P. Seaman until his death was the
manager Diamon Safari [pty]. SA.

We will start the first transfer with fifty two
million [$52,000.000] upon successful transaction
without any disappoint from your side, we shall
re-apply for the payment of the remaining rest
amount to your account, The amount involved is (USD
152M) One hundred and Fifty two million United States
Dollars, only I want to first transfer $52,000.000
[fifty two million United States Dollar from this
money into a safe foreigners account abroad before
the rest, but I don't know any foreigner, I am only
contacting you as a foreigner because this money can
not be approved to a local person here, without valid
international foreign passport, but can only be
approved to any foreigner with valid international
passport or drivers license and foreign a/c because
the moneyis in us dollars and the former owner of the
a/c Mr. Allan P. Seaman is a foreigner too, [and the
money can only be approved into a foreign a/c.

However, we will sign a binding agreement, to bind us
together I got your contact address from the
Girl who operates computer, I am revealing this to
you with believe in God that you will never let me
down in this business, you are the first and the
only person that I am contacting for this business,
so please reply urgently so that I will inform you the
next step to take urgently. Send also your private
telephone and fax number including the full details of
the account to be used for the deposit.

I want us to meet face to face to build confidence
and to sign a binding agreement that will bind us
together before transferring the money to any account
of your choice where the fund will be safe. Before we
fly to your country for withdrawal, sharing and

I need your full co-operation to make this work
fine. because the management is ready to approve this
payment to any foreigner who has correct information
of this account, which I will give to you, upon your
positive response and once I am convinced that you
are capable and will meet up with instruction of a
key bank official who is deeply involved with me in
this business. I need your strong assurance that you
will never, never let me down.

With my influence and the position of the bank
official we can transfer this money to any foreigner's
reliable account which you can provide with assurance
that this money will be intact pending our physical
arrival in your country for sharing. The bank official
will destroy all documents of transaction immediately
we receive this moneyleaving no trace to any place and
to build confidence you can come immediately to
discuss with me face toface after which I will make
this remittance in yourpresence and three of us will
fly to your country atleast two days ahead of the
money going into theaccount.

I will apply for annual leave to get visa
immediately I hear from you that you are ready to act
and receive this fund in your account. I will use my
position and influence to obtain all legal approvals
for onward transfer of this money to your account
with appropriate clearance from the relevant
ministries and foreign exchange departments.

At the conclusion of this business, you will be
given 35% of the total amount, 60% will be for me,
while 5% will be for expenses both parties might have
incurred during the process of transferring.

I look forward to your earliest reply
yours truly,

Jubeeg Venture

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Interesting. An email, from someone claiming to be a Very Important Person in South Africa, sent from a Yahoo! Mail account, from an IP belonging to rbow.net, a domain whose technical contact (from the whois information) is in Enugu, Nigeria!

So, what is special about this email that it would cause me to post it on my web site, and comment on it? Read on, and all will be revealed...

This email is a variant of the 'Nigerian 419' scam letter. This scam, named after the relevant section of the Nigerian criminal code, seeks to entice people into participating in a scheme that is of somewhere between 'borderline-illegal' and 'outright fraud'. If the recipient of the letter responds, at some point an advance fee is requested. If this fee is paid, the 'mark' (person being scammed) is hooked, and the scammers will continue to request additional funds (often, the reason is 'complications' in completing the transaction), until either the mark runs out of money, refuses to participate further, or agrees to travel to the country of origin and complete the deal.

It is critical to point out the fact that, if the mark actually makes that trip, his/her life is in serious danger, and there is little chance that his/her home country can do much to help. Often, the trip is arranged without a visa, which is a serious offense in some countries (including Nigeria). Once in-country, the mark is effectively a prisoner of the scammers (who may include officials of the country's government). Since the scheme is often times of dubious legality (an understatement if I ever heard one!), the mark is going to be reluctant to report it to the authorities. Once the mark runs out of money, the scammers are likely as not going to arrange for the mark to 'disappear'. There have been reports of such disappearances, and an American 419 victim was murdered in Lagos, Nigeria in 1995.

So, what do you do if you receive one of these letters? First of all, NEVER SEND THEM ANY MONEY! In fact, it is best that you not respond to the email sender in any way. (Note: This is not intended as, and should not be construed as, legal advice.) If you are in the United States, the United States Secret Service gives the following instructions: ''If you have received a letter, but have not lost any monies to this scheme, please fax a copy of that letter to (202) 431.'' If you are in another country, you should contact your law enforcement authorities for guidance.

A point of historical trivia: even though it is known as the 'Nigerian 419' scam, it did not in fact originate in Nigeria. In fact, this is simply a variant of a scam known as the 'Spanish Prisoner' scam. To give you an idea of how old this scam is, it was originally written on parchment, and lured the mark with the promise a hidden treasure chest!

For further information on this scam, please visit the United States Secret Service: Advance Fee Fraud Advisory page.

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