Thursday, July 01, 2004

Responding to the Nigerians

Every other day or so I receive yet another scam email from Nigeria (also known as the 419 Scam after a Nigerian law). Lately, they've been personalizing their offers by claiming I have a family connection to the awaiting millions in cash. Read my standard response after the 419 letter below:

Dear Sir/Madam;

I am Barrister Dr,Raymond Kuti.a Solicitor. I am the Personal Attorney to Mr Fredrick Orlando a national of your country, who used to work with shell development company in Nigeria.On the 21st of April 1999, my client, his wife And their three children were involved in a car accident along Sagbama Express Road. All occupants of the vehicle unfortunately lost there lives.

Since then I have made several enquiries to your embassy to locate any of my clients extended relatives, this has also proved unsuccessful. After these several unsuccessful attempts, I decided to trace his relatives over the Internet, to locate any member of his family but of no avail, hence I contacted you. I have contacted you to assist in repartrating the money and property left behind by my client before they get confisicated or declared unserviceable by the bank where this huge deposits were lodged.

Particularly, the Bank where the deceased had an account valued at about 14.6 million dolla!rs has issued me a notice to provide the next of kin or have the account confisicated within the next ten official working days. since i have been unsuccesfull in locating the the relatives for over 2 years now I seek your consent to present you as the next of kin of the deceased since you are from the same country so that the proceeds of this account valued at $14.6 million dollars can be paid to you and then you and me can share the money. 55% to me and 40% to you,while 5% should be for expenses or tax as your government may require, I have all necessary legal documents that can be used to back up any claim we may make.

All I require is your honest cooperation to enable us see this dealt through. I guarantee that this will be executed under a legitimate arrangement that will protect you from any breach of the law.Please get in touch with me by my email to enable us discuss further.

Best regards,
Dr,Raymond Kuti.

Right. All he requires is my "honest cooperation." This was my response:
Dear Dr. Kuti,

Thank you for contacting me. Such sad news. I do understand that it's potentially lucrative. However, I am not related to your client.

There are hundreds of thousands of people with the same surname in the United States. I took the liberty of forwarding your email to an organization that is highly efficient at finding missing persons - the FBI. No doubt the Federal Bureau of Investigations will be contacting you soon. Please respond to them with more details about your client, because they will be most helpful. They always "get their man."

I am glad to have been able to assist you. Good luck on your search.


PS: I will also forward your email to Interpol, as there are many people with the same surname living in Europe.

Are you shaking in your boots, Mr. Kuti?

Nah, you've deleted me and moved along - and probably have hundreds of other potentional suckers waiting to be reeled in.

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