Nigerian  Frauds

4 1 9    A D V A N C E    F E E    S C A M S

Nigerian scam, 419, advance fee, Abacha, Central Bank of Nigeria, Amsterdam, lottery, Lagos, London, Toronto, Spain
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M  G  B  A  D  A   -   M  U  G  U     A  L  E  R  T!

   While this site presumes neither to speak authoritatively about the effect of the scam on North Americans, Europeans, Asians, Africans or Australians, nor to advise governments, the comments that come in suggest that this scam hurts the reputation of legitimate African businessmen among people who have no other knowledge of, for example, West African society. As if business wasn't tough enough. West African government officials and legitimate business people must be steaming mad. The relatively few scam artists cast a shadow of suspicion over many business dealings. Africa is a country rich in resources with a tremendous history.

   Some of the scams play on the victims' greed, but many play on victim's financial neediness, altruism or religious feelings. The specifically business-related scams entice small to mid-sized business people or faith-based organizations to pay advance fees to bid on non-existent contracts, or to give money to pay fees associated with moving money to their bank account. The religious scams, sprinkled with a lot of references to God and church work, prey especially on faith-based organizations.

   Perhaps (let us hope) a future Nigeria, tranquil and prosperous, will see fewer of these frustrated novelists-in-crime -- their literary talents will have found other legitimate avenues by which to profit. The 419 scams are truly sad, because there are so many wonderful people in Africa. We love Africa and we love Africans. Nothing here should be taken as a criticism of any nation or people, nor do we suggest that there are no scam artists in other countries.

   By the way, "mgbada" or "mugu" are two of the words Nigerian scam artists use when talking about their victims. Not flattering terms! Don't be a MUGU. We hope and pray that you will not fall prey to their many variations of the confidence game.  This web site is a labor of love...

                                                                                                 — Antiphanes, ancient Greek dramatist"

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Click on links below to see a copy of the scam letter or scam report.

~ After a number of years of research.  Here are some discoveries ~

Check with FAQ if you don't know what to do about these scams

 1. A series of letters used for over two years to determine the depths of deception in these "419" scams 
 2. How eleven of the many scam artists replied to the first email response to their initial unsolicited email
 3. The anatomy of a scam.-- How a "419" scam develops. Very insightful. 
 4. A typical progression of the "419" confidence scam, along with suggested options and alternatives
 5. A heartrending letter from a victim who got scammed.
 6. Central Bank Of Nigeria -- Press Statement about the "419" Scam Letters (from a newspaper ad).
 7. A scan of five actual business cards, representing bogus people, which were mailed via DHL.
 8. A bogus letter designed to see how scam artists would respond --
     something about JFK. Kinda funny.
 9. Here's how one "scam buster" dealt with a 419 scam artist posing as a
     hapless widow.
 10.Will the real fake Auditor General of African Banks please stand up? --
      What a $152 Million mess!
 11. The Mariam Abacha story is by far the most popular of all 419
       scams...check 'em out!
 11. Police bust a 419 ring in South Africa. Read the article.
 12. Many use religion as their main tool in the confidence game --
       bold-faced liars...
 13. Here's an exchange with a persistent scam artist.
 14. True Confessions. Here are some responses from scam artists when
       confronted. Quite insightful.

Dr. Freeman's
Latest Book

 15. FAQ -- Frequently Asked Questions and other responses regarding 419 scams.
 16. Mgbada?-- From a Nigerian who has researched these scams from within the 419 rings. Insightful.
 17. Some of the latest 419 news coming out of West Africa.
 18. Some variations of the 419 scam. Remember, it's always about the advance fee they are looking for.
 19. An actual 419 scammer was captured on film by a remote VideoCam in Amsterdam. Incredible!
 20. 419 Lottery Scams -- Same scam, different approach.
 21. Here are some of the latest scams -- Same scams, different approaches.



E V E R Y.......E V E R Y
unsolicited email or fax you
receive that looks even close
- like the ones we list here -
I S    A    F R A U D.

100% Guaranteed. Period.

Run, don't walk, away from all of these frauds. It's called an "advance fee" scam.
They all make the empty promise of big money and then ask you to "advance" them
some money -- any amount. They will start high, but if you protest they will come down.
All they want you to do is to advance them some money. It's that simple.

Everything complicated gets real simple
when you grasp this simple reality.

Here are several of many blunt responses from active 419 scam artists to this web site:

"I would rather say f--- this Freeman Institute. The white men has cheated us in our life a lot and now its time to revenge. F--- all ya M------ F------ dealing with Nigerians. If the victim isn't greedy in life why should he believe such stories???????????"
You know what? I am happy this is happening. This is what I call 'reprisal attacks' for the evils the so called western world did to Africa and the entire black race (slavery, apartheid, looting, killings etc.) Now, It show that blacks are smarter after all.
Never believed whites can be so daft to fall for such schemes as 419. You people think blacks are fools? Or why would you people want to assist someone who wishes to loot, steal or transfer some illegal money from Africa. Candidly, I feel all 419 victims should be arrested and tried. It takes two to tango.

We have a saying, it goes thus: "if a man cannot match his master strength for strength, he resorts to killing his master's favourite goat." Just by writing and cooking up some fictitious story, the mighty are falling. THE PEN IS MIGHTIER THAN THE GUN!!!

View the 4-minute film clip of Return To Glory: The Powerful Stirring of the Black Man
And then check out Return To Glory

The letters are generally sent by a supposed Prince, a Chief, a Dr., wife of a General, a Barrister/Solicitor/Lawyer or a Bank Official.

Please be patient! This section is being built slowly, but surely. More letters coming as they are received.

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"....Nigeria is still ranked as one of the most corrupt countries on earth. U.S. citizens lose  approximately $2 billion ($2,000 million) a year to Nigerian fraud -- be it credit card fraud, insurance fraud, or 419 scam letters, or counterfeiting," which totals about "two
and one-half times the value of our total U.S. exports to Nigeria."  
-- Nov. '99, Robert L. Mallet, Deputy Secretary of Commerce

A recent letter from someone scammed -- I have recently fallen victim to a Nigerian wire transfer scam.  I realized it too late to stop it.  I had recently put up some used computer equipment for sale.  Within a few days, someone claiming to be from England had contacted me to buy my equipment.  Part of the deal was that he was going to send me a cashiers check, I was to cash it and take my share, then forward the rest to a supposed shipping agency to pick up the equipment and ship overseas.  Now that all is said and done, it makes sense how it worked. Basically, once the check is cashed into real money, I forwarded it to a name and address (all fake) to Lagos, Nigeria.  A few days later, my bank's collection department called me in regards to my account being in the negative!  It was then that I realized what had happened.  Once they had the money transferred, it was realized that the check was counterfeit and I got left holding the bag.  As much as I'd like to fly over to Nigeria to sift through their scam-ridden society, I realize that it would most likely result in a dead end search--literally.  Nonetheless, thank you for creating such a site to increase the knowledge of this behavior.

Here are some rationalizations from scam artists as to why a victim should work with them:

  Dear Mr. xxxxxxxx: Thank you for the information, but i must let you know that if you beleive in the story you gave me now then we should call it a quit ok, i think that i did explain all these to you on the phone that although that there so many SCAMS going on but this one is not among them, you know people can fake some thing from orriginal ok. and i must let you know that all those things you saw on the internet is the hand work of the Nigerian Govt. they have connived with American and European Govt. to discourage so many Foreigners who join hand with their African counterparts to take money away from this country so all these is a plot with the Western Govt. there are so many advertorials both on the Internet and media organisations to discourage people. So if you so beleive in all those stories then i will look for some body else ok, i have promised to furnish you with my working ID and my international passport so that at th end of the day if this dose not work out i will refund you all the Monies that you have spent so far. I promise not to offend you and you must promise not to betray this trust bestowed on you. Please respond to this mail immediately so that i will know my faith, i will send you any further information until i have received a response from you based on this mail.  Best regards, Shola Williams

  Dear Mr. xxxxxxxxx: Thanks for your prompt response, your question about the legitimacy of this transaction is just like asking a trader why should i pay for what i am buying. But in any case we are like partners in progress and if i had the lot money to pay the lawyer and pay the fees for the documents then there is no point of contacting you ok, you need to assist in either paying the lawyer or the fees for the documents because without the back up documents there should be no indication that you are the next of Kin to Mr Hew ok i will like you to understand this point and more over if we did not pay the lawyer how will you secure the legal backing. So if you are ready to participate in this transaction you will have to assist at some point either to pay the lawyer or the fees for the documents. My dear i will like you to ignore all the advertorials on the internet or Media groups because they work hand in hand with our Fedral Govt. our Govt. pay them a lot for these adverts, i want you to cast all those discourgements behind you and let us forge a head with this transaction for you will never regret knowing me ok i assure you this, i am ready to lay my Job on the line for this money because i needed this money and we will get this money, you know that i work in the bank as an Auditor so i know how to go about the whole thing with out any traces at the end of the transfer, just leave everything for me, but you will have to assist at some point to defray the cost on this transaction. i wait to hear from you immediately. Best regards, Hayford Ononuju


Feel free to provide a link to this web page, so that more people can see the truth about these 419 scams.

 Central Bank Of Nigeria Fake International Remittance Alhaji Rasheed Mohammed
  Dr. James Egwu fake board member of the Petroleum Trust Fund. 
  Dr. Umar Danjuma Ali fake Chairman of the Committee for the Verification of Claims 
  Dr. Richarson John Garba fake purchase of ammunition Sierra Leone Diamond Mining 
  Dr. Solomon Godfrey fake foreign liaison officer board of trustee RWA Agency Relief West Africa
  Edward Amedu, fake Eastern Area manger of Ecobank, PLC.
  Federal Ministry of Works and Housing, Abuja, Nigeria fake confirmation certificate
  Ibrahim musa fake chief security officer central bank of ivory coast 
  Jean Kolonoga fake Chairman of the Allocation Board Committee
  Jose Emmanuel, Larry Kosweat, Allan Kismate -- Who is the real fake Auditor of Prime Banks in Africa?
  Michael Ndidi Kabila, fake cousin of late President of Congo
  Mrs Stellamaris Agwasi, fake wife of late Col. John Ndosi Agwasi from Congo  
  Nigerian Corporate Affairs Commission fake certificate
  Preachers from a supposed Nigerian church, Seed Harvest Ministry -- John Waters or Patrick Udo?
  Prince Bundor, fake son of King Sankoh, Sierra Leone 
  Robert Kambili, Fake Bank Manager of Delta Trust Bank of Nigeria
  Dr. Maryam Abacha fake wife of Nigerian head of State General Sani Abacha. 
  Yuvraj Kailash -- A new story line out UK, using Nepal as a backdrop for the story
  Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation Fake certificate of registration 
  Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation Fake foreign exchange recommendation application 
  Nigerian Scam Letter Abu Zamani fake official Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation 
  Nigerian Scam Letter Alhaji Ibrahim Tukur fake official Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation 
  Nigerian Scam Letter Clement Apkamgbo fake official Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation 
  Nigerian Scam Letter Engr Frank Dada fake official
  Nigerian Scam Letter Dr. Anthony Enahoro Kome 
  Nigerian Scam Letter Dr. Dandyson Ugo 
  Nigerian Scam Letter Dr. Frank GOZIE fake financial controller NNPC 
  Nigerian Scam Letter Dr. Hassan Ahmed 
  Nigerian Scam Letter Dr. Timothy Ajala 
  Nigerian Scam Letter Dr. Yerima Musa 
  Nigerian Scam Letter Dr. Yerima Musa fake request for real estate acquisition 
  Nigerian Scam Letter Uffot Ekaette Fake Secretary of the President 
  Nigerian Scam Letter Engr. Clement Esu 
  Nigerian Scam Letter Engr. Sarki Shehu 
  Nigerian Scam Letter John Aknife fake lottery win
  Nigerian Scam Letter John Ude fake solar panels purchase order 
  Nigerian Scam Letter Yukaba fake Nigerian Federal Ministry Member 
  Nigerian Scam Letter Lucky Osa a fake Justice of the Peace 
  Nigerian Scam Letter Shugaba fake chairman Nigerian Federal Ministry of Works & Housing( FMWH) 
  Nigerian and Congo Scam Letter Chima Magashi fake son of Theophilus Magashi 
  Sierra Leone scam letter, fake Accountant General Hassan 
  SMS Mobile Telephone Please call me on 09011500065 Message Scam 
  South Africa Anglo Gold Corporation Dr. James Khumalo 
  South African kidnap gangs lure businessmen to traps 
  South Africa Mrs. Mariam Y Sankoh
  Union Bank of Nigeria Michael Noble fake bank official 
  United Bank of Africa Mazwell Ibe Fake Bank Manager 
  Alhaji Mustapha Yaya fake director of national Nigerian corporation (heart rending E-mail from victim)
  The list goes on and on -- With much more to come....

Reports we have received -- Ask a lot of questions if NorthAm Trust Financial, Toronto is involved.
Here's another bogus site --
Most of these sites are up for a while and then they change site's when things get too hot...


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    Nigerian 419 is a global problem, affecting nearly every nation on earth. These operations have been running since the mid-1980's and conservative estimates of total money is stolen worldwide through the year 2001 range upwards of $5 billion.     The term 419 comes from the section of the Nigerian criminal code outlawing fraudulent activities. It has become a part of everyday Nigerian Language. As others might say that one has cheated, or stolen, or tricked, or misrepresented, or lied, or conned, etc., a Nigerian will often just use the term "419" to cover all or some of the above activities. 

Some of the more common "Advance Fee" 419 versions are: 

  1. Contract Repurchase 419, in which the target thinks he is buying the proceeds of an over billed contract legitimately executed in Nigeria by another firm.    2. Oil 419 in which the target thinks he is buying a 
shipment of Nigerian oil at a discounted rate. 


   3. Charity Scam 419 in which the target is told that the persecuted Nigerian Christians or Muslims, etc, (depending upon the target organization) need to get their money out of the country before it is seized.    4. Black Currency 419, the second most prevalent version, and is a money laundering scheme where the target pays the Nigerians money to purchase chemicals to clean money. 

5. Will Scam 419 in which the target is told he has been willed money by someone in Nigeria.

  6. Dead Foreigner Scam -- A large sum of money has been left in an bank account by a visiting businessman in Nigeria, who tragically died in a car/plane wreck. Unfortunately, the lawyer/bank employee can find no heirs.... would you like a share in these funds by posing as the sole heir of the deceased's estate? Of course, some lawyer fees and estate taxes will need to be paid for first... but hurry, in a short time, the government will seize the funds and put them into their war fund!   7. Ill Gotten Gains Scam -- A large sum of money or gold bullion was left to the wife/son/ daughter of a Nigerian Royal/Dictator/Opposition Party Member who has since been ousted/ assassinated. Sadly, there is no way to safely get these funds out of the country without the help of an open-minded foreigner. Some minor out-pocket expenses will need to be paid, initially, of course, but imagine the rewards of having your share of the money... but hurry, the new government in power is trying to recover these funds!
  8. Fortunate Investor Scam -- A wealthy (usually ex-royal, ex-government official) investor wants to invest in a large sum of money in a foreign country, but can't attend to the business personally. Wouldn't you care to do them the favor of overseeing the investment? Of course, some sort of formalities will need to be attended to first, after all, how can you be trusted with their millions without first having you meet them in Nigeria.... but hurry, this is a limited time offer, and the new government in power is closing in!   9. Over-Billed Government Contract Scam -- The National Petroleum Company (or another government agency) of Nigeria has been
purposely and successfully over billed a large sum of money on a legitimate contract. Now all these fellows need is a helpful foreign company to make them dummy invoices so that the funds will be
transferred. Wouldn't a minor investment to get some paperwork pushed through the Nigerian government bureaucracy be worth the millions of dollars that your share will bring... but hurry, the
contract needs to be billed within a short period of time, or the payment will lapse!
  10. Below Market Commodities Scam -- A fortunate Nigerian has gotten a large quantity of crude oil/gold/diamonds but cannot move them from their storage facility without the help of a foreigner investor. If you would only pay some "earnest  money/fees/ bribes" he will let you keep a very generous percentage of the commodities' market value once they have been sold.... but hurry, time is of the essence, the people in charge of storing it are getting suspicious!   11. Death Fax Scam -- The U.S. State Department's report on Nigerian Fraud has an actual reproduction of one of these... Basically a wealthy executive gets a "pay or die" demand from a "professional assassinator organization"... hurry, if you don't pay, or if you tell anyone else, you will be killed by our observers! It would be laughable if it weren't so twisted.


12. Letter of Credit Scam -- A Nigerian business places a relatively small (legitimate) order from your company, perhaps $1000 worth of goods. Shortly thereafter, another order is placed, for a slightly
larger amount, again, paid in full. Suddenly, an urgent order and much larger is placed, but this one needs to be air freighted on the double! Your Nigerian partners have just received a lucrative government contract, and if this shipment arrives on time, it means many more large orders in the near future. Don't worry about waiting until the bank draft clears... after all, the order is from our friends in Nigeria, and they have always made good their payments before.


  13. Helpful Police Official Scam -- It's the re-victimization scheme. If at any point, the victim decides to walk away from the deal, an individual posing as a government or police " task force
official" will contact the victim and offer to "investigate" the scammers and attempt to recover the lost funds...of course, this sort of investigation requires the utmost privacy and discretion, and apparently that doesn't come cheap in Nigeria... but hurry, you have to start this investigation as soon as possible, or else "they" will get away! Ironically, more often than not, the same group of scammers is responsible for the "re-vic" con, and it has also been documented that con men often resell the "walk-aways" to other groups of con artists that specialize in the re-vic scam.
  14. The Confidence Scam -- Pretending to befriend or to be in love with someone and then mentioning that something terrible has happened (e.g. I was beaten up two days ago, left for dead...all money taken...I am in hospital...My passport and money was stolen and I am in another country with no place to go...etc.). The scam artist plays on the victims emotion. They wait until the "emotional hook" has been set before sharing the "recent" awful news. ("I am embarrassed to ask you for this, but I need $3,000 to pay the hospital or they will throw me out on the streets. Please help me. I do not know what to do...")

Africa is a continent rich in resources and history.


   Not much. We don't want to sound fatalistic, but the reality is that the scam artists hide behind untraceable email addresses, sending their scam letters from pay-by-the-hour Internet Cafes. The governments of Africa are generally in a survival mode, with little interest in dealing with some Internet scam artist in a local village. There are always bigger fish to fry. 

   Plus we have actually talked with West African government and business officials about their perception of these 419 scams. They have expressed amazement that anyone could be fooled by the  empty promises contained in unsolicited emails from a stranger in Africa. In their eyes, the culpability goes both ways. "Who could be such a fool to give money to someone they have never personally met for such an obvious fraud?" This is a valid question for all of us to ponder...

   What we have done at The Freeman Institute is to provide a free service to warn individuals who may be flirting with the idea of great wealth coming their way. Our motto is: Run, don't walk, away from these scams and then do what you can to warn people about this pervasive problem. Feel free to provide a link to this page, so that more people can see the truth about these 419 scams.

   Most 419 letters and emails originate from or are traceable back to Nigeria. However, some originate from other nations, mostly also West African nations such as Ghana, Togo, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Ivory Coast ( Cote D'Ivoire ) etc. In most cases 419 emails from other nations are also Nigerian in that the "Home Office" of the 419ers involved is Nigeria regardless of the source of the contact materials. But there are occasionally some "local" copycats trying to emulate the success of the Nigerians. These folks tend not to last too long actually operating out of nations other than Nigeria, but they do try.


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419 Scam Letters From Africa. 
If you receive a similar scam letter from from Nigeria or anywhere else in Africa -- Do Not Answer It.
Do not attempt to communicate with the criminals. 

Forward a copy of the 419 letter to The Freeman Institute.
Your letter just might get listed here in attempt to warn others. Tell us your story.


419eater. This is one of the best sites we know about this subject. Very funny and educational. -- Excellent site!
artists against 419. bait 419 bit by bit!
email from colonel zuba. Fun with Nigerian Scam Artists
Gannett's roost Many examples of 419 Email Frauds
Mugumania. German site
Mugus I have annoyed. Scamming the scammers
Nigerian Scam Baiting (The new Internet Bloodsport)
Scam Joke Page. Some have decided to write them back and lead them on a bit
Nigerian Scams. West African Scam / Nigerian Advance Fee Fraud in Internet Web Mail & Email Letter Scams. Where 419 scam artists meet their match.
Scamorama The laugh is mightier than the scam.
Nigeria Law. Legal Support. Frequently Asked Questions.
Central Bank of Nigeria. About Advance Fee Fraud (The 419 tab in the menu). Includes a Discussion Forum .
U.S. DEPARTMENT of STATE. Search for "advance fee fraud scam report", or see the travel tips for Nigeria. Metropolitan police London about West African Advance Fee Fraud.
United States Secret Service. Public awareness advisory regarding "4-1-9" or "Advance Fee Fraud" schemes.
Australian Security Worker Issues in the Australian private Security Industry. helps you spot and avoid email scams

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