Conversation With A Nigerian Scam Artist


The following series of emails attempts to playfully document one of the world’s most  infamous cons: the Nigerian Email Scam, aka the 419 scam, aka the advance-fee fraud.

For Fools like us, it’s truly difficult to comprehend, but many, many tens of  millions of dollars have been stolen from honest, unwitting victims through the use  of a scam that was first created more than 90 years ago. Astonishingly, it continues  to be effective.

While we sympathise with those who fall prey, we at The Motley Fool also believe we  have a duty to educate, amuse, and enrich our community as well. In that vein,  please enjoy the following unedited conversation between one mischievous Fool and  his new, wealthy friend:

From: Mr. Patrick Jeff
Sent: Tuesday, November 02, 2010 10:08 pm

To: Nick Kapur
Subject: Greetinge to you my dear
I am the chairman Debt Reconciliation committee, we wish to inform you that due to  the reform going on now and the agreed meeting held last week, it has been resolved  that your payment should be effected immediately through the HSBC Bank Lodon, J P  Morgan Chase New York or Bank for international settlement Swiss.
You are adviced to make your choice in between these 3 Banks
You should also Note that only $10 million will be paid to you as the case maybe.
Please do confirm to us which of the Banks you will like your payment to go through.
Mr Patrick Jeff

From: Nick Kapur
Sent: Wednesday, November 3, 2010, 2:35 pm
To: Mr. Patrick Jeff
Subject: RE: Greetinge to you my dear
Mr. Jeff,

What glorious news!
I’ve recently lost all my money speculating on call options for the Motors  Liquidation Company. Strong bullish advances seemed like such a lock at the time …  but alas, GM stock might actually be worth zero. I swear this market is rigged!
Now, with what little money I have left, I’m going all-out on Ambac LEAPs. This is  precisely why your email is such a GODSEND! I’m desperately looking for more  capital.
So, how do I get my money? I choose JPMorgan as my bank. Do I get all $10 million at  once? I sure hope so. I think I’m getting a margin call from my broker as we speak.
What information do you need from me to complete the transaction?

From: Jeff Patrick
Sent: Wednesday, November 03, 2010 3:01 pm
To: Nick Kapur
Subject: Attention My Dear Nick Kapur is very urgent
Attention Sir

I got your revert mail to the subject matter and will have to advice you to forward  urgently your receiving Banking information without mistake as it has been noted  about your choice Bank.

Full Beneficiary Name
Bank Name
Bank Address
Bank Account Number
Swift Code
Copy of your Passport

You are therefore adviced to funish us with the details of your account and your  working Telephone numbers for easy communications.

Thank You
Mr. Frank Jeff
From: Nick Kapur
Subject: RE: Attention My Dear Nick Kapur is very urgent
To: “‘Jeff Patrick’”
Date: Wednesday, November 3, 2010, 7:28 pm
Mr. Frank Jeff,
Glad to hear from you. I recently spoke with your acquaintance Mr. Patrick Jeff (you  must be brothers — I LOVE family operations!!!). Anyway, I would be happy to supply  you with all my relevant banking information. That way we can surely expedite the  transaction. I do have one small request first, however.
Due to lingering pressure on the US dollar, can I request that I get paid in gold  bullion rather than in good old greenbacks? With Ben and Co. announcing today that  they’re firing up the presses to the tune of $75 billion per month, I have serious  concerns about fiat currencies. Perhaps you can address this issue for me by just  shipping me a container or two of gold bars?
If my math is correct, if you convert the $10 million that you accidently discovered  belonged to me into gold (at today’s rate of $1,343.90 per oz), that comes to around  230 kilos of gold. I imagine that shouldn’t be too difficult.
Please let me know if you need quotes on shipping — I know a few firms that are  quite reasonable!
I trust this issue won’t hold us up for long. Once you confirm, I’ll happily send  you all the specific information you need from my JPMorgan account.
Thanks, Frank.

From: Jeff Patrick
Sent: Thursday, November 04, 2010 11:31 am
To: Nick Kapur
Subject: Attention My Dear Nick Kapur is very urgent
Dear Brother Nick,
Many thanks for your email in which you confirm to me your seriously and willingness  to do this transaction with me. Infact we are now as One Blood family. However, this  transaction will be done through Bank to Bank wire transfer to your nominated Bank  account in US because making it through shipping will have a strong delay and  penalities because of your Government which I do not want anything will keep the  fund on hold not to reach to you. So My Brother I will like you immediately forward  to me your contact info so that I will start the processing of the documents on your  name as a beneficiary of the fund.
Your Details requested
Bank Name
Bank Account Number
Swift Code
Routing Number
Bank Address
Bank Tel/fax Number
Immediately I receive this details of you we shall commence as soon as possible and  get everything done. Once again I will advice you to call me on my Cell Phone Number  +234 7066266430 for more details. I await for your immediate response
Mr Frank Patrick Jeff.
From: Nick Kapur
Sent: Thursday, November 04, 2010 3:21 pm
To: ‘Jeff Patrick’
Subject: RE: Attention My Dear Nick Kapur is very urgent
Dear Brother Frank Patrick Jeff,
We are, indeed, ‘One Blood family.’ I consider you my brother, just like I consider  the traders at Goldman Sachs to be my brothers. Bless you!
Sadly, I must report that we cannot do business. It appears that the SEC is  investigating me for making spurious claims about access to mysterious liquidity  pools in Africa. THEY actually don’t believe that we’re One Blood family! And they  don’t believe you are right about to WIRE ME US $10 MILLION!!! It’s mind-boggling  that they wouldn’t count this as capital to count against margin requirements.
In a cruel twist of fate, they’ve decided to shut me down and unfold all my  investments. Isn’t that absolutely CRAZY?
Alas, I’m sad to say I can’t do anything with the $10 million you are prepared to  send me.
I wish you the best of luck, brother.

—Mr. Nick Kapur

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