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Inheritance Scam

If you happen to get an inheritance from someone, I can guarantee you that you won't get an email to notify you about it. This is a scam and I encourage you to report it to the authorities so they can handle these scammers! Watch out for this email if you happen to get one. This is the email I got in my spam folder this week and I decided to share it with you so you can have an idea what to look out for. You really don't have to read it all, his emails are very long. My replies are in blue so you can look out for those. Any sarcastic comments that I have added for your benefit are in red.

But first - A Disclaimer! I have not and will not give this person any of my personal information. I will not send him/her any money or receive any money from him/her, fake or otherwise. I do not have any interest in actually conducting business with this person, this conversation is for the sole purpose of warning people against this scam and/or for your entertainment. Thank you.

WILLIAMS GROUPS & ASSOCIATE 130 BANK ANTHONY WAY IKEJA GRA LAGOS

Dear Sir/Madam,

Good day, firstly, I apologize for sending you this sensitive information via e-mail instead of a Certified mail/Post-mail. This is due to the urgency and importance of the information. This project is based on Trust,confidentiality and sincerity of purpose in order to have an acceptable meeting of the minds. I am a fifty two (52) years old established lawyer. My name is Mr.Chris Williams,a legal personal attorney to an expatriate and a consultant with an American Oil company,PENNZOIL (Now deceased) He died in the Tsunami disaster on 26th december 2004 while on vacation in Thailand.

Six years ago, My Client successfully executed a contract for the Federal Government of Nigerian {FGN} worth US$18.3 million dollars. A part payment of USD9.million dollars was paid to my client, while the balance of USD9.3 million Dollars was still unpaid before my client died in the Indian Ocean Tsunami disaster. However, all my efforts to locate the possible next of kin proved abortive. Untill his sudden demise, He was not married and was 44 years old.

NOW THE CRUX OF THIS E-LETTER is that the new elected Government Of Nigerian is fully paying all foreign contractors who have successfully executed their contracts and my client is among those benefited in this first quarter payment schedule which has already been deposited in his bank. As his personal attorney/Adviser, his bank has officially notified and instructed me to forward particulars of my client's next of kin within the next 14 official working days so that he/she can be paid the outstanding USD9.3 Million dollars otherwise his payment will be diverted to the government coffers account as uncliamed bill.

Since I have been unsuccessful in locating any of his relatives, I decided to contact you for a deal so that we can work together as a team to remit the money to your account as my client next of kin since I do not want to seat and watch my client hard earned entittlement to go astray,it will be easy for us to achieve because you are of the same name and country like him. Although I know that a transaction of this magnitude might make anyone apprehensive but I would like to assure you that I am proposing this project to you with the best of intensions. As a lawyer, I have the power to secure all the necessary legal documents that will be used for this claim.

All I require from you is your honest co-operation to enable us see this deal through. I guarantee that this transaction will be executed under a Legitimate banking arrangement that will protect you from any breach of law. Upon successful conclusion of this project,you will be compensated with 40% of the total fund,whi le 60% will be for me.

If you are interested to work with me in this deal then kindly reply strictly with your personal Telephone /fax number for effective communication and oral clarification on how to proceed next.

Sincerely yours,

Mr.Chris Williams {Legal Adviser}

Wow! A lawyer who can't be bothered with proper English grammar, spelling or punctuation. Amazing!

My Reply: I don't understand. Are you saying I stand to inherit money from someone who isn't my relative? Can you explain this in more detail? -Sarah

He wrote back!

Dear Sarah

I contacted you to help me repatriate this fund left behind by the deceased, who was involved in the Tsunami disaster since I do not want the bank to freeze the account because of the non-appearance of his next of kin.

You may like to learn that the deceased Engr.Fredrick P.Hoffman, lived and worked in Nigeria with the PENNZOIL COMPANY Bonny Island before he died. He has a deposit with the Standard Trust Bank Plc {UBA GROUPS} where the Nigerian Liquefied Natural Gas {NLNG} Company deposited his balance payment worth $9.3million dollars waiting to be paid out to the inheritor.

My main focus is to use my professional position as an attorney and present you as the next of kin to the deceased and apply that his entitlement be transferred to you through the said legal processes. We shall start by sending a formal application to this effect.I will copy you with the text of the said claim and transfer application to this effect. Thereafter, the bank will request of you the relevant back up documents to your claim and application according to the demand of our probate law for transfer of inheritance. I am on the stand by to provide you with their requirements from the stock of documents, which some is presently with me.

Otherwise, I will facilitate our acquisition of any one demanded outside my possession. Once we have provided the bank with their demands, they would now be under legal obligation to pay you the money by {Certified Draft} or wire transfer.

In as much as I have assured you that some of the documents of claim are in my position, there are some which will have to be acquired through legal procedures as the application of claim will be complimented with a legal award we shall have to seek from our law Court here. You are not to worry about this, as I will use my professional competence and Influence to acquire all the legal relevant documents of claim in your name. The transaction is 100% legitimate and real so you have nothing to worry about.

This transaction will not take us more than 7 banking working days to execute, all I want from you is just to follow my instructions to avoid any mistake in the process. Be assured that the procedures to be adopted in effecting the transfer in your favour will be official and legal which will protect us from any breach of the law now and after the transfer though this transaction requires confidentiality.

Moreso, I want to remind you again of the need and importance of utmost confidentiality and your full adhereance to my instruction to our success.With all due respect, I expect the highest level of your compliance to my instructions, even when they seem foolish in your view. I am the expert and anchorman here and must be granted all the benefit of doubt in the discharge of my professional expertise. Also, you must be willing to contribute not just your financial contribution to successfully execute this project but also to give this transaction the time and attention it demands. Once these understanding are perfectly implemented, then we are bound to meet in your country to celebrate our successful transaction in a matter of days .

Above all, I personally count on the will and blessing of the almighty God to facilitate our plan andunderstanding, to produce not just success, but also peaceful sharing of the funds at the end of the day and a healthy family business relationship thereafter.

Thanks for your attention, time, understanding and consideration. I also pray for establishment of cordial relationship between us, God being our helper. Since time is not on my side in the course of presenting you as the next of kin to the deceased, I want you to send the following information;

your full name your contact addres Tel/Fax your direct e-mail your occupation your age your sex

Once I receive this information, I will proceed immedately to filling out the TEXT OF APPLICATION of CLAIM which will be submitted to the bank for immediate processing of the funds into the account you will nominate for this purpose.

You can can reach via my telepone +234 8037388430 for more clarification.

Waiting your prompt response.

Sincerely yours, Mr.Chris Williams {Legal Adviser}

Ah! He gave me his telepone number! I wonder what a telepone is? Maybe it's similar to the telephone we have here in the United States?

My Reply: Mr. Williams, Can't you just deduct my fee out of the money that I am to receive? It seems like that would be much easier for everyone. Then, you can Western Union the money to me, as that would be the easiest. Please let me know if this is acceptable. Sarah

I never heard back. Bummer. I really could have used the money.

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