AN INSIDE VIEW OF THE 419 WORLD -- I have studied these 419 activities for more than three years having stayed in Lagos within this period. In
fact by November 2002, with my assistance a 419er was apprehended in Port Harcourt. He initiated the deal with his victim who
incidentally is my friend. Later on he pretended to be speaking from Spain. He said he has about $285,000 in a security company in Oregun Lagos and would like my friend to go and claim it having
forwarded the deposit certificate and the contact tel. no. in Lagos.
Actually my friend believed all these and only informed me when he
wanted to know the exact route to the place since he does not know Lagos
very well. Even when I told him that the deal was fake he never believed me,
until I called the telephone no. of the so-called security company, which admitted having the package in the name of my
friend but claimed he does not know the content.
Finally I spoke to him in their language claiming also to be fraudster,
I accused of taking away my mgbada (i.e. the name they give to their
victims) and that my mgbada forwarded the his mail to me, the discussion goes thus;
THE PHONE WAS ON SPEAKER PHONE AND WE ARE FOUR IN THE ROOM INCLUDING
THE VICTIM & A POLICE OFFICER
ME: Hello Dr. X, my name is Z, why did you write to my mgbada? (in a
Dr: Who are you and which mgbada are you talking about?
ME: So you claim you don't' know me again, I will show you I started
this job before you and you can not just take away my job like that.
Dr: Ok sorry which mgbada are you talking about my friend?
ME: The guy in Port Harcourt, the importer, why did you send him a mail, do you want to spoil the job?
Dr: Sorry somebody brought that job to my office last week and I don't'
think it has spoiled, the guy is still responding.
ME: Actually I wanted somebody from Lagos to come over here and do the
job because they know me here.
Dr: (laughs) Please let us team up now to get the money. The guy has
agreed to pay N500,000 (about $3,700) to claim the package (my friend
did not tell me this initially) in Oregun Lagos.
ME: But I have already given him a bill of N1m and he agreed, you see
you would have spoilt this business. But now I have given him appointment at Airport Hotel Port Harcourt which he has agreed, can you
ME: next week
Dr: give me your telephone number so that I can call you.
ME: Ok I hope you know my real name, my real name is Mr. D and I'm using Dr. Z for this deal. and your name is...
Dr: My real name is Mr. A and I live at no. x something street in Ikeja
ME: Ok we will talk before that time
Dr: Thanks, please do not be angry about the whole thing.
I late made an enquiry and discovered he was telling me the truth because he has no suspicious about my being part of them. Finally at
the agreed date he sent one of his representative in Port Harcourt. We
arrested him with a box of defaced dollars in the Port Harcourt
Hotel. Dr. was later picked up in Lagos. Up till today none of them knows me.
As you know they have many kinds of these deals like:
1. Credit card fraud; The Yoruba's of South West Nigeria are the main
artistes, and they have their base in London and US.
2. The main 419 involving oil sales, contracts, overdraft etc. In
fact this is the first and the main 419 and the artistes are mainly the
Igbo of the south east Nigeria. This fraud hardly succeeds without bank and
government workers getting involved. Also the Lebanese plays one the
most dangerous roles in this transaction, over 97% of these bank accounts (where the victims transfer the funds) belongs to them. After
confirming the funds, they pay them in the local currency here and collect their commission. I even suspect that these
Arabs are linked to all these terrorist groups because of the kind of influence they have
in the old military government of Nigeria dominated then by Islamic military men.
They have their contacts all over Europe and America.
3. WW (wash wash): This is the reigning one now and the most dangerous
of all of them. They have their offices all over Africa and Europe
especially; Spain, Holland, London and Germany. This is where they deceive their victims by defacing real currencies with a black
substance of which every cleaning liquid will wash off the black stuff
but they claim only a particular chemical will wash it off. This particular trick is in so many dimensions that I
am not able to tell you all now, but in due cause I will let you know more.
There are still others but because of your time I will stop here but
will not fail to tell you the role of communication system in these tricks. Systems like phone forwarding, email to fax, fax to email,
telephone voice styles etc. I will discuss these with you in due cause
so that you will know that I have really studied them. In fact that was
the worst risk because I have been in the environment where they are
doing all there live pretending to be part of them. I will also tell you how they get protection from the police.
Every 419er does not believe it is over until you stop communicating
with him. They believe they are more intelligent than any other
person as a result they believe in as much as you are still
communicating with them you may fall in at a moment. Also they do
not have time to read, remember they work very late searching for
addresses in the net, sending new mails, replying to the old ones.
Do not under rate them. They work harder than me and you. Most
419ers send an average of 2000 emails and faxes daily, and use their
spare time on women, drinking and other social activities.
Remember these guys are very deadly. 419ers do not want to hear or see anybody
who they feel is an obstacle to their activity even their parents. Also
remember that so many of them are church leaders. In due cause I will
give you instances involving some religious leaders here especially our
But now that we have democracy and a president that is ready to fight
corruption, we will succeed if we want to fight it.
This letter was received by someone who had
been bilked of over $4000 by 419 scam artists a few years ago. Read
the letter and then read below what a Nigerian government insider
had to say about this letter.
Attn: Mr.xxxx xxxxxx)
My name Mr. Nuhu Ribadu, Director Economic & Frnancial Crimes Commission.
Anti Fraud Control(EFCC) A governmental body that checks and control the
rising fraudlent activities here in Nigeria,with the assistance of American
Secret Services in Nigeria. Well, we would want to inform you that our
organization arrested top Nigerian fraudstars they`re arrested inside a
bank where they went to cash money sent to them by one of their victim.
Luck ran against them when we were contacted by the bank officials, which
resulted to their immediate arrest after three years they were declared
wanted by the Nigerian government and British government concerning A
British man they defrauded six hundred and eighty thousand pounds on the 5th of March 1999. Right now, we have placed them to the
police net for more interrogation before their trial. After our interrogation and searching to their houses, we found some documents
containing your name and many other people they have transacted business
with. They also confessed to us that you were been defrauded some years
back, though the amount was not disclosed. They're specialize in using
Internet, phone and fax to reap people off their money all over the world
by telling their victims that they have huge amount of money they would
like him or her to assist them to transfer overseas, on the process, their victim will end up spending thousands of dollars to finalize their proposal. They are not the only people in Nigeria that is into this dirty game but by the grace of Almighty God our organization will get them all. So far, we have recovered ($455,000.00) Four hundred and fifty five thousand dollars from them being part of money they defrauded people. We kindly request that you should tell us what you know more about this people in question, also forward to us the total amount they defrauded you and the way you made the payment to them. Also forward to us your personal telephone and fax numbers for our easy communication. Once we receive all these information, coupled with our on-going investigation, we will quickly return back to you all the money defrauded, according to the constitution and rules and regulation guiding the (EFCC) Nigerian Anti Fraud Control. Respond immediately after reading this mail because we still have more people attending to.
Economic & Frnancial Crimes Commission
The above scam letter was
sent to Mr. Ribadu by a
friend working against 419 scams in Lagos, Nigeria
This is yet another 419 template. Remember that they are
very current with happenings, so they use the current officer and the
current happenings to deceive their victims.
In the first instance, this is not Mr. Ribadu's e-mail address, there is
no way a such a high ranking Govt. security official will use a FREE YAHOO
MAIL account for such a sensitive correspondent.
Your friend should be very careful because they are still there in as much
as his particulars are still in their database. I will forward this mail to Mr. Ribadu, then we see what we can do
together on this.
A note from a Special
Assistant to the real Mr. Ribadu
Thank you for drawing this to our attention. I can categorically state
that the mail did not originate from Mallam Ribadu. It is the handiwork of
some mischievous scammers. Kindly communicate our position to the
person receiving this email. If you or they can send us the details, we will investigate
this and get a definite resolution on it.******************************************************
I thank you for your support since our inception and I hope we can meet
and work together on this issue in the nearest future.
Thank you and Best regards,
Special Assistant to Mr. Ribadu, Executive Chairman
------- WHAT CAN BE DONE
ABOUT THESE SCAM ARTISTS? -------
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
met?" 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 www.freemaninstitute.com/419.htm
-- so that more people can see the truth about these 419 scams.