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Yet Another Spin on the Nigerian Scam

Published April 21, 2003

This scam is relatively new, but is basically a new spin on the Nigerian scam. Recently an Internet-savvy Florida citizen was targeted by this new variation and reported the activity to law enforcement.

In this case, the targeted individual was offering a mountain bike for sale at the price of $1,000. After negotiating the price, the buyer sent the seller a personal check drawn on a New Jersey bank, but with a return address in Nigeria. While the negotiated price was under $1000 the check was written for $5,000.

When the seller e-mailed the buyer to ask about the discrepancy, she was told that the check amount was a mistake and she was asked to send them a cashier's check for the difference. This made her suspicious and when she e-mailed the buyer again they told her to deduct money from the return amount to pay for her "time and effort," and to then return the remainder.

She decided to do neither, but instead contacted her local law enforcement agency. Law enforcement discovered that the check was no good and that the bank was very familiar with this account.  According to the bank, the suspect(s) are hoping that the target cashes the check and sends them the money before her bank tells her that the check is no good.

The problem is that the suspect lives in Nigeria and the United States does not have an extradition treaty with them at this time. In addition the tumultuous state of the Nigerian government leads most American officials to believe that an extradition treaty is a long time coming.

For more information on the Nigerian Scam and other E-mail Scams click here.


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