E-Mail Scams – Talking To Ibrahim

Welcome, one and all, to another of my more random postings. Now, some of you remember my 2016 posting My Mate Paul: Microsoft Scam Calls. Therein, I explained that I liked having some fun with the scam phone callers that I sometimes get. My reason was, and remains, that all the time they spend tied up with me is time they aren’t spending scamming someone who doesn’t know that it’s a scam. Today’s post is similar but deals with another type of scam: e-mails.

So, if you hadn’t guessed already, I like to have fun with these as well, and for exactly the same reason. Recently, I took the time to strike up some conversation with two scammers. Now, one of these is still going on, but the other finally gave up yesterday. That being the case, I thought that it would be fun to post the complete string of e-mails for you all to enjoy. Frankly, that this went on as long as it did astounds me.

If that sounds interesting enough for you to read one … well … buckle up tight, because it’s gonna be a long one! Oh, and please note, I have left the scammers e-mails as I received them, complete with typographical errors.

 

Sunday, February 4th, 2018

 Ibrahim Mantu

Dear Friend,

I know that this mail will come to you as a surprise as we have never met before, but need not to worry as I am contacting you independently of my investigation and no one is informed of this communication. I need your urgent assistance in transferring the sum of $11.3million immediately to your private account. The money has been here in our Bank lying dormant for years now without anybody coming for the claim of it.

I want to release the money to you as the relative to our deceased customer (the account owner) who died a long with her supposed NEXT OF KIN since 31 January 2006. The Banking laws here does not allow such money to stay more than 13 years, because the money will be recalled to the Bank treasury account as unclaimed fund.

By indicating your interest I will send you the full details on how the business will be executed.

send your data.

Your Full Name.

Your Country.

Your Age.

Your Occupation.

Phone Number

Office Address

Please respond urgently and delete if you are not interested

TELEPHONE NUMBER +22967585346

Regards,

Mr.Ibrahim Mantu

 

My Response

Dear Ibrahim,

Thank you kindly for your communication. Please forgive my rather old school nature, but it seems rather presumptuous to refer to me as a friend at the start of the e-mail. As you say yourself, we have never met before. I don’t know your astrological star sign, favourite snack, or that you have a secret fear of crocodiles, and you don’t know whether or not I am secretly nothing more than a lowly thespian. For the record, I am not.

This social faux pas aside though, I am rather shocked to hear of the passing of my relative. Of course, I would be happy to claim any inheritance that is rightly mine, but I do feel the need to check some details first so that we can be sure that the money is reaching the right person. After all, I am sure that neither of us would want to see monies being transferred to someone who doesn’t have a legal right to them. That would make us very bad people indeed.

So, may I ask who the deceased is and in which way we are related? You also mention banking laws where you are, and I noted an overseas country code on you telephone number. +229 relates to Benin, does it not? I was not aware that any in my family had made their way there. Though, I do note that the country is generally accepted as the birthplace of vodun. Given my family’s long-standing position in the business of the selling of ancient religious artefacts, this does appear to make sense. I hope that the death was not related to such practices? My understanding is that occult magics can be quite dangerous if not handled properly, and some of my relatives are far from careful.

So, if you could please confirm the details of the deceased and how you would like the business to be carried out, we can get the ball rolling. Or, as they say in

Benin, lance le bal.

Yours sincerely,

Hopefully a future friend

 

Ibrahim Mantu

Dear Friend,

Thank you for responding to my email. Sorry if i may have offended you by contacting you,I got your email through the Internet when I was making a research for a foreigner that I will use in this great opportunity because I don’t want this money to be recalled to our Bank treasury as unclaimed fund so i decided to contact you in a good manner to assist me and also to share the benefit together with me.

I stand to assure you that there is no problem in this business for it is 100% legal and risk free. I have worked with this Bank (African Development Bank, PORTO NOVO BENIN REPUBLIC- West Africa) for over Fifteen years now.I hoped that you will not expose or betray this trust and confident that I am about to repose on you for the mutual benefit of our both families.

I want to release the sum of US$11.3M (Eleven Million Three Hundred Thousand United States American Dollars) to your account. As you may wish to know,The said amount belongs to one of our deceased Customer Mrs.Joy Lake who perished along with her family since January 31 2006. The Banking laws here does not allow such money to stay more than 13 years,that is the reason why i want to release the money to you so that we can use it to secure the future of our both families because i don’t want the money to be recalled to the bank treasury as unclaimed fund.

Before contacting you, I have prayed to the Almighty God, believing strongly with my experience that nothing will stop us from achieving success within a week immediately we start. I will also like you to assure me that you will not betray me when the money enters into your account because i have worked very hard in my life and this one opportunity that I can,t afford to play with. This business is everything to me because the future of my children depends on it as I will soon go on retirement. I do not intend contacting any body about it except you, that is why I plead for your sincere cooperation, hence at my age, this funds is my only hope of retiring in a good business after my retirement from the banking services.

Your role is to act as the beneficiary Why i’m here as an insider of the bank to ensure this fund is transferred into your account,if only you are sure that you will not betray me when the funds is transferred to your account.

The reason for a foreigner in the business is for the fact that the deceased woman was a foreigner and it is not authorized by the law guiding our Bank for a citizen of this country to make such claim. This is the reason while the request of you as a foreigner is necessary to apply for the release and transfer of the fund smoothly into your reliable Bank account.

The deceased customer late MRS.JOY LAKE did not have any relationships with our bank, she was only a customer to our bank. So there is no trace either now or in future.And for this reasons you have nothing to fear as your interest and identity will be legally protected.

You do not have any risk to bear in this transaction,Therefore if you are really sure of your integrity, trustworthy and confidentiality, and accept not to cheat or disappoint me after this business, reply with your

1)FULL NAME —

2)COUNTRY —

3)ADDRESS —

4)OCCUPATION —

5)AGE —

6)TELEPHONE NUMBER —

Once i receive the above information i will write a letter of authorization which you shall send to the Head Administrative Department in our bank to approve and transfer the funds to your account.

Once again, this business is hitch free and don’t have any negative implication.You should not entertain any fear as I have made all modalities for the smooth and easy transfer of this fund to your account. Please observe utmost confidentiality as you may wish to know that I am a staff of this Bank and be rest assured that this transaction would be most profitable for both of us.

NOTE// At the conclusion of this transaction, you will gain 40% and 60% for me.

Best regards to you and your family,

FULL NAME–MR.IBRAHIM MANTU

COUNTRY — BENIN REPUBLIC

ADDRESS — BP 2889 SECT.17 PORTO NOVO BR PORTO NOVO BENIN REPUBLIC

OCCUPATION — BANKER/ WITH AFRICAN DEVELOPMENT BANK (ADB)

AGE –51 YEARS OLD

TELEPHONE NUMBER — +22967585346

 

*** So, the fact that I got a response to that first e-mail surprised me. It wasn’t as over the top as some of the ones that I’ve sent before, but I do think that it is quite clearly a wind-up. Never the less, with the response having being received, I decided that the game was on, ***

 

 Monday, February 5th, 2018

My response

Dear Mr Ibrahim,

Thank you again for your expeditious response. I feel that clear communication such as this is key to forming the sort of relationship required to carry out business such as you are proposing. I am also highly appreciative of your reassurance that the transaction is one hundred per cent legal, legitimate, and risk free. If there’s one thing that stifles a good business deal, it’s a transaction that carries with it an illegal, false, and risk filled nature! So, with all of this being said, there is no need to apologise. You have not offended me in the slightest, I simply -as I’m sure you can appreciate – wished to ensure the legitimacy of our correspondence.

Ah, Joy Lake. It is interesting to see this name here, as I stumbled upon a distant relation to the Lakes of Wisconsin when I last delved into the veritable rabbit hole that is ancestry.com. Still, though I never knew that branch of the family tree, it is sad to hear that she and her family perished together in 2006. Again though, I must ask, what happened to them? What was the cause of their unfortunate demise?

Reading on, I am certainly happy to offer assurance that I will not betray you, however. It is simply not in my nature. From the tone of your e-mail I can see that you too are a very trustworthy person, and I appreciate that quality, especially when it comes to the world of business relationships. I note though that you wish to split the money with forty per cent coming to me, and sixty per cent coming to you. While I am not entirely opposed to this split – $4.53M is nothing to be sniffed at – I do feel that we should discuss the actual split a little. In the spirit of this, I would ask that you help me understand your reasoning. My guess would be it takes into account the risk on your part and, as you have said, provides you with a means to both retire and ensure the future of your children.

Of course, I can certainly understand the desire to care for your children. I myself and the proud father of eight little ones and have another on the way. Perhaps, in order to aid me in my understanding, you could tell me a little about your family? How many live in your household? What are the names of your children? This seems like a good way to get to know each other and foster a friendship, does it not? Once I understand who it is that you are financially caring for, I can then suggest a percentage split based on household numbers?

Regardless though, I shall indeed provide the requested details in due course. Frankly, it would be foolish of me to pass up an opportunity such as this. I must say though, it seems strange that you are requesting my full name. You said yourself that you looked me up online, so you must already know my name, correct?

Kindest regards,

Your friend, Mr. Simon Claus.

 

Ibrahim Mantu E-Mail 1

DEAR FRIEND,

HOW ARE YOU? I HOPE ALL IS WELL WITH YOU BY THE GRACE OF GOD ALMIGHTY.I HOPE YOU ARE MAINTAINING A GOOD HEALTH.I RECEIVED YOUR EMAIL.I THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR YOUR EMAIL.I HAVE NOT CONTACTED ANY BODY FOR THIS BUSINESS.YOU ARE THE ONLY ONE THAT I CONTACTED..PLEASE HELP ME.I REALLY NEED YOUR HELP.OPEN YOUR HEART AND HELP ME PLEASE MY  FRIEND .WE ARE GOING TO GAIN A LOT FROM THIS PROJECT.NOT ONLY MONEY BUT EVERLASTING RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN OUR FAMILIES.ABOVE ARE MY FAMILY PICTURES FOR YOUR.ME,MY WIFE AND MY CHILDREN.

ONE AGAIN TH BUSINESS IS FOR ME AND YOU AND IBRAHIM MANTU

MY BELOVED DEAR IN GOD,PLEASE I NEED YOUR HELP IN THIS MATTER.DO NOT FEAR FOR ANYTHING,OR TO TAKE IT AS I LIE PLEASE.WE WILL USE PART OF THIS MONEY AND HELP CHARITY AND COMPASSIONATE PEOPLE PLEASE.DO NOT TAKE IT AS A SIN.THEIR IS NO BODY TO CLAIM THIS FUND.FOLLOW MY INSTRUCTION LET US GET IT AND USE IT FOR GOD PLEASE.IF WE GET THIS FUND AND USE IT FOR GOD WILL IT WILL BE GOOD IN THE PRESENT OF GOD PLEASE.I NEED YOUR HELP.JUST OPEN YOUR HEART AND HELP ME SO THAT WE CAN GET THIS FUND.PLEASE SEND IT TO THIS BANK E-MAIL ADDRESS (africandevelopment0@outlook.fr) PLEASE SEND IT TO THE BANK NOW.I WANT TO KNOW IF YOU HAVE SENT THE APPLICATION TO THE BANK.IF YOU HAVE NOT SENT IT.PLEASE SEND IT NOW SO THAT WE CAN START THE BUSINESS PLEASE.

MY BELOVED GOOD BROTHER IN GOD,I WANT TO REALLY TELL YOU ABOUT MY SELF AND MY FAMILY.I AM FROM A VERY WELL KNOWN CHRISTIAN CATHOLIC FAMILY.EVERY BODY IN OUR COMMUNITY KNOWS OUR FAMILY AS A VERY REFUND CHRISTIAN CATHOLIC FAMILY,BUT OUR PROBLEM IS THAT WE ARE POOR FINANCIALLY,BUT IN THE PRESENT OF GOD WE ARE RICH.

I AM 51 YEARS OLD.I AM FROM BENIN REPUBLIC IN WEST AFRICA,I WAS BORN AND BROUGHT UP IN GAMBIA WHERE MY AGED FATHER LIVES HIS LIFE AND GOT MARRIED.HE WAS A RAIL WAY WORKER GAMBIAN.MY MOTHER IS FROM GAMBIA,WHILE MY FATHER IS FROM BENIN REPUBLIC.I AM A FRENCH MAN,BUT I DO NOT SPEAK FRENCH VERY OR FLUENTLY WELL,DUE TO WHERE I WAS BROUGHT WAS AN ENGLISH COUNTRY.I WORK IN (ADB) BANK IN BENIN REPUBLIC PRESENTLY.I HAVE FOUR BLESSED CHILDREN FROM GOD.MY WIFE IS FROM A VERY GOOD CATHOLIC FAMILY TOO.SHE IS DOING HER MASTERS DEGREE IN THE UNIVERSITY PRESENTLY. TWO OF MY CHILDREN ARE IN SECONDARY WHILE TWO ARE IN THE PRIMARY SCHOOL.

MY COUNTRY IS VERY POOR.IF YOU LOOK AT THE WORLD STATISTICS, YOU WILL SEE THAT MY COUNTRY IS ONE OF THE POOREST COUNTRY IN THE WORLD, IF NOT THE POOREST.PEOPLE ARE SUFFERING IN MY COUNTRY.THAT IS WHY I WANT TO GET THIS MONEY AND HELP MY PEOPLE.IF YOU COME INSIDE OUR CITY YOU WILL SEE BIGGER HERE AND THERE,DUE TO THE POOR NATURE OF MY COUNTRY. PLEASE HELP ME IN THIS BUSINESS.MY GOOD GOD WILL BLESS YOUR FAMILY.PLEASE CALL ME ON MY CELL PHONE NUMBER +22967585346,SO THAT WE CAN DISCUSS.I WANT US TO FINALIZE THIS MATTER.PLEASE GIVE ME YOUR CELL PHONE NUMBER SO THAT I CAN CALL YOU AND DISCUSS WITH YOU.I AM EXPECTING YOUR CALL.

I AM AWAITING TO HEAR FROM YOU .EXTEND MY SINCERE GREETINGS TO YOUR ENTIRE FAMILY.GOD BLESS YOU AND YOUR ENTIRE FAMILY AND BYE FOR NOW.

YOURS BROTHER,
IBRAHIM MANTU AND MRS. MARY ELVIS.
GOD BLESSINGS,PROTECTIONS AND GUIDIANCE TO YOUR ENTIRE FAMILY.

Ibrahim Mantu E-Mail 2

WHAT I WANT YOU TO DO FOR ME IS TO PRESENT YOURSELF AS THE NEXT KIN TO MRS.JOY LAKE OUR CUTOMER WHO DIED IN A AMERICAN PLANE CRASH SOME YEARS AGO.THIS BUSINESS IS A O RISK,BUT YOU DON’T HAVE TO TELL ANY BODY.THIS BUSINESS IS BETWEEN YOU AND I.

WE ARE READY TO FACILITATE THE TRANSFER OF THIS FUND INTO THE ACCOUNT YOU WILL PROVIDE US BASE ON ALL THE STATED CONDITIONS.IF YOU SEND THIS APPLICATION TO THE BANK, ANYTHING THE SEND TO YOU,YOU SEND IT BACK TO ME SO THAT I CAN HELP YOU FILL THEM.YOU HAVE TO BEAR IN MIND THAT OUR BANK CAN EVEN SEND YOU THIS KIND OF LETTER OR FORMAT I SENT TO YOU WITH ANOTHER NAME,AND ANOTHER AMOUNT OF MONEY JUST TO KNOW WHETHER YOU ARE THE REAL NEXT OF KIN TO THE DESEASED CUSTOMER.IF YOU RECEIVED SUCH MAIL,YOU SEND IT BACK TO ME OK.I PROMISE THAT WITH MY POSITION HERE,THIS BUSINESS WILL BE OVER IN 7 WORKING DAYS. OUR BANK WILL SOON START THEIR INTERNATIONAL TRANSFER,SO YOU HAVE TO BE FAST IN ANYTHING YOU DO.

I AM AWAITING TO HEAR FROM YOU.THIS IS MY PRIVATE PHONE NUMBER +22967585346 AM EXPECTING YOUR CALL.HAVE A NICE DAY. GOD BLESS YOU AND YOUR FAMILY BYE FOR NOW.

YOURS BROTHER,

IBRAHIM MANTU.
GOD BLESSINGS,PROTECTIONS AND GUIDIANCE TO YOUR ENTIRE FAMILY.

Please I want you to fill this application and send it immediately to the Foreign remittance manager of the bank so that within (14) working days, your nominated receiving account shall be credited accordingly.

ATTENTION//REV (DR) Augustine Abba
FOREIGN REMITTANCE MANAGER,
AFRICAN DEVELOPMENT BANK (A.D.B)
ADB ANNEX HOUSE 16–18 AVENUE LUNDUN LION.
01 BP 8337 PORTO NOVO 01
TEL :(00229)42 17 109 FAX:00229-5038 6466
PORTO NOVO BENIN REPUBLIC.
E-MAIL:::  africandevelopment0@outlook.fr

Sir

APPLICATION FOR THE RELEASE AND SUBSEQUENT TRANSFER OF MY INHERITANCE FUNDS OF $11,300,000.00 MILLION FROM ACCOUNT NUMBER 18463464711.

I am MR……….. a cousin brother and next of kin to late MRS.JOY LAKE, your decease customer who held the above account number with your bank, and who died in AMERICAN PLANE CRASH,ON JANUARY 31ST 2006.

I discovered the said account details in her bedroom,and as her next of kin I humbly appeal to your esteemed office to release and transfer these funds into my nominated receiving bank account detail stated below.

1)Your Full Name:
2)Your Bank Name:
3)Your Bank Address:
4)Your Age:
5)Marital Status:
6)Your Phone Number:
7)Your Fax Numbers:
8)Bank Account Number:
9)Receiving Country:
10)Your Occupation:
11)Swift Code:
12)Sex:
13)Your Religion:
14)E-Mail:

I shall appreciate your prompt attention to this application as I solemnly promise to abide by all your protocol and transactional requirements.
 

*** That’s right, I got two e-mails; one with official instructions and one with the family background. Now, I did a reverse picture search on the photos, and they do turn up a few times. With him having unexpectedly sent me fake family photos though, I knew that I had to responds in kind. ***

 

My Response

Dear Ibrahim,

Thank you for your continued correspondence. I must say, to learn that Joy and her family died in a plane crash is most distressing. I have always had a terrible fear of flying, and this does nothing to waylay those fears. Can you give me any further information at all? Was she flying to or from America? Was it a day or night flight? What airline was she using? Do we know if the flight was oversubscribed, or if she had exuberant amounts of luggage? I ask as, as I’m sure you can imagine, it has been a terrible shock to learn of her death, and I simply want to put the pieces together and get a clear picture as to what exactly happened in this terrible tragedy.

On a happier note though, I am glad to read that you work so efficiently. Seven working days, or nine days total if you prefer, is an admirable amount of time to deal with such a complex legal matter. Why, were the banks in my country so efficient, we could have perhaps avoided the banking crashes of recent years. But, of course, this is all just rambling from me. The point that I was trying to make was that I am glad to see that the transaction will happen so quickly when the time is right.

There are a number of things that I must ask though. First, and perhaps most importantly, I need to know if there is a time limit in which to make this claim? Is there a specific date by which I must complete the paperwork and return it? Also, how does this work with the time difference between here and Benin? For example, were I to file paperwork on the day after the deadline here, but find that it is technically still the last day in Benin, would that be allowable? I am afraid that I am a bit of a thrill seeker you see, and leaving important papers to the very last moment is one of my favourite ways to get an adrenalin kick! Crazy, I know, but we all get our jollies somewhere, don’t we?

Now, the paperwork itself appears to be fairly straightforward. My concern is that it states that I am a ‘cousin brother and next of kin’. While I do appear to be her next of kin, I am certainly not a ‘cousin brother’. In truth, and perhaps I am simply ignorant of terminology used outside my home country here, I do not know what a ‘cousin brother’ is. Perhaps, as you found my details while searching the internet, you could confirm my actual relation for me? I can certainly then amend the paperwork as necessary.

Moving away from the unfortunate business of dead relatives and their fortunes for a moment though, I was also very happy to receive your additional e-mail regarding your family. My, what a lovely family you have. It is a shame that you only had a picture of two of the children. May I ask, what are their names?

I see too that you are a good, Catholic man? I too have spent time in the Catholic faith. What is your favourite psalm? And who do you believe was the best Pope?

Now, I have only one other question (or rather set thereof). I know, I know, I do ask a lot. Rest assured however, that we are now near the time where we can finally begin business. You have stated that you have neither contacted nor told anyone else of this matter. Yet, your recent e-mail was signed as from Ibrahim Mantua and Mrs. Mary Elvis. Who is Mary Elvis? Should is peak to her too? Or is she perhaps an alter ego of yours? If so, this is not an issue, I am rather open minded.

As a gesture of goodwill, and in return for your lovely family photo, I have included a photo of my own. It shows my family before the birth of our youngest, Comet. It was set up to resemble an old-world style photo. I think they did a rather smashing job with it!

Warmest regards,

Your friend, Mr Simon Claus

Family

 

Ibrahim Mantu

My beloved good Friend in Lord Jesus Christ,

I want to know if you have sent the application to the bank as I directed you. if you have not, please go ahead and send it to them,and

Update me. I AM WORKING WITH MRS. MARY ELVIS.

Thank you,

Mr.IBRAHIM MANTU

 

My Response

Dear Ibrahim,

Ah, I see. If you are working with her, then I can be certain that she is a trustworthy individual. Before I go ahead and complete the form, could you possibly let me know the answers to the questions posed in my previous e-mail? I do not wish to beg, but I find the questions to be of the utmost importance. As I have stated before, my preference is to know who it is that I am working with.

In addition, I previously mentioned that I would like to know the reasoning behind your proposed 40%/60% split. Could you please let me know what factors were considered in your calculation of this, and whether you have considered if another split would be more appropriate?

Thank you again, and I await your full response with much anticipation.

Your friend of Dutch descent, Mr S. Claus

 

Ibrahim Mantu

My beloved good Friend in Lord Jesus Christ,

I want to know if you have sent the application to the bank as I directed you. if you have not, please go ahead and send it to them,and

Update me.

Thank you,

Mr.IBRAHIM MANTU

 

*** With the messages getting shorter, I decided that Mr Mantu must have been getting impatient. As such, I figured that I may as well prod him a little and pile on the silly stuff. I mean, he didn’t even comment on my ‘family photo’, which I was most certainly not going to let lie. ***

 

My Response

Dear Ibrahim,

I am beginning to become concerned that you are not reading my e-mails in their entirety anymore. This is most disconcerting, and certainly not how I would expect a friend to act. In case the fault lies with my own wording however, I shall be as succinct as possible.

At present, I have neither completed the form nor sent it to the bank. I have several questions that I require an answer to before I can do so, some of which are of a personal nature, and some of which relate directly to what I need to complete and how we are to carry out the business of the transfer. For clarity, I have copied the necessary e-mails segments below this message.

As a side note, I find it most rude that you did not comment on my own family photo after I was so complimentary about yours. Am I to assume that you find my family to appear unwholesome?

Sent with concern and nervous trepidation,

Your friend of Dutch descent, Mr S. Claus

(The previous long e-mail was pasted again here)

 

Ibrahim Mantu

My beloved good Friend in Lord Jesus Christ,

HOW ARE YOU TODAY? I HAVE NOT I HAVE  RECEIVED YOUR MESSAGE OUR TIME IN BENIN NOW IS 7:10 PM AND I HAVE RECEIVED FAMILY NICE PHOTOS YOU HAVE TO TELL THE BANK THAT YOU ARE COUSIN BROTHER TO OUR DECEASED CUSTOMER MRS.JOY LAKE AND 40% IS FOR YOU AND 60% IS FOR ME ANDMRS. MARY ELVIS MY SON NAME IS JOHN MANTU AND CHIOMA MANTU I DID NOT NO THE NAME OF THE FLIGHT OK

Thank you,

Mr.IBRAHIM MANTU

 

My Response

Dear Ibrahim,

I am rather good, thank you. Despite some chilly weather, nothing warms the heart quite like written conversation between friends. And how are you?

Thank you for your response. I am glad that you find my family photo to be nice. Tell me, did you spot a ghostly apparition on the far left? It looks rather like an enlarged image of my own bearded face, don’t you think?

John and Chioma are good, strong names. I note that you did say that you have four children though, yet have only named two. I hope this is not due to me causing you to mistrust me in anyway. I can be somewhat difficult to work with at times, but I act only as I do out of the goodness of my heart.

Regardless though, I certainly would not feel comfortable telling a financial institution that I am someone’s ‘cousin brother’. The terms cousin and brother are mutually exclusive classifiers of relation. Why to be her ‘cousin brother’ I would need one of my parents to be Mrs Lake’s parent, and one to be her grandparent. Not only would that raise several moral questions as it pertains to inter-familial breeding, it would also be a complete lie. Now, if I am wrong and the term ‘cousin brother’ is a charming colloquialism in Benin, then perhaps you could explain its meaning to me?

I note also that you still haven’t provided a time limit for me to complete the paperwork. This really must be confirmed so that I can ensure that plans are in place to expediate the completion of said papers at the correct time. You have also avoided my question regarding your favourite bible passage and Pope. My personal favourites are Leviticus 19:11 and Pope Alexander VI.

With regards to the split, I am still not sold on the figures. I appreciate your situation, but I do have twice as many children as you. On top of this, Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Cupid, Donner, Blitzen and Comet (my children fi you were in doubt) are all of school age. And this is before we take into account our soon to be born son, Rudolph. I feel therefore that the split should be 60% to me and 40% to you. If you believe this to be unsuitable, then please do present an argument as to why the figures should differ. I am happy to listen to any logical reasoning that you may have.

Sent with renewed vigour for our working relationship moving forward,

Your friend of Dutch descent, Mr Simon Clause

 

Ibrahim Mantu

My beloved good Friend in Lord Jesus Christ,

HOW ARE YOU TODAY? I HAVE RECEIVED YOUR MESSAGE YOU HAVE NO PROBLEM FILL THE APPLICATION FORM,AND SEND IT TO THIS BANK E-MAIL OK

Thank you,

Mr.IBRAHIM MANTU

 

*** So, after a lengthy exchange of e-mails over Monday, I decided to let him wait for the next response, and didn’t bother responding until the next day. Here, I continue to make it clear that I’m on a wind-up, and he continues to try to get my information. ***

 

Tuesday, February 6th, 2018

 

My Response

Dear Ibrahim,

I am afraid that I really do have a problem. I simply will not lie on an official form, so unless you can confirm the meaning of ‘cousin brother’ or provide a more accurate statement of familial relationship, I will be unable to comply with your instructions. To do so, would land me on my own naughty list. Oh, and if you wish to continue, please also provide another copy of the form. I am afraid that my dog ate my e-mail.

As a side, I shall assume from your lack of response to my suggested change in the split of the monies that you are happy to proceed with my suggested ration of 60:40 in my favour.

Sent with the fervour of an excited rabbit,

Your friend of Dutch descent, Mr S Claus

 

Ibrahim Mantu

DEARR FRIEND,

ON A VERY GOOD DAY.SO  HOW ARE YOU DOING? I HOPE YOU ARE VERY FINE. I THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR HAVING TAKEN TIME TO REPLY MY LETTER.

WHAT I WANT YOU TO DO FOR ME IS TO PRESENT YOURSELF AS THE NEXT KIN TO MRS.JOY LAKE OUR CUTOMER WHO DIED IN A AMERICAN PLANE CRASH SOME YEARS AGO.THIS BUSINESS IS A O RISK,BUT YOU DON’T HAVE TO TELL ANY BODY.THIS BUSINESS IS BETWEEN YOU AND I.

WE ARE READY TO FACILITATE THE TRANSFER OF THIS FUND INTO THE ACCOUNT YOU WILL PROVIDE US BASE ON ALL THE STATED CONDITIONS.IF YOU SEND THIS APPLICATION TO THE BANK, ANYTHING THE SEND TO YOU,YOU SEND IT BACK TO ME SO THAT I CAN HELP YOU FILL THEM.YOU HAVE TO BEAR IN MIND THAT OUR BANK CAN EVEN SEND YOU THIS KIND OF LETTER OR FORMAT I SENT TO YOU WITH ANOTHER NAME,AND ANOTHER AMOUNT OF MONEY JUST TO KNOW WHETHER YOU ARE THE REAL NEXT OF KIN TO THE DESEASED CUSTOMER.IF YOU RECEIVED SUCH MAIL,YOU SEND IT BACK TO ME OK.I PROMISE THAT WITH MY POSITION HERE,THIS BUSINESS WILL BE OVER IN 7 WORKING DAYS. OUR BANK WILL SOON START THEIR INTERNATIONAL TRANSFER,SO YOU HAVE TO BE FAST IN ANYTHING YOU DO.

I AM AWAITING TO HEAR FROM YOU.THIS IS MY PRIVATE PHONE NUMBER +22967585346 AM EXPECTING YOUR CALL.HAVE A NICE DAY. GOD BLESS YOU AND YOUR FAMILY BYE FOR NOW.

YOURS BROTHER,

IBRAHIM MANTU.

GOD BLESSINGS,PROTECTIONS AND GUIDIANCE TO YOUR ENTIRE FAMILY.

Please I want you to fill this application and send it immediately to the Foreign remittance manager of the bank so that within (14) working days, your nominated receiving account shall be credited accordingly.

ATTENTION//REV (DR) Augustine Abba

FOREIGN REMITTANCE MANAGER,

AFRICAN DEVELOPMENT BANK (A.D.B)

ADB ANNEX HOUSE 16–18 AVENUE LUNDUN LION.

01 BP 8337 PORTO NOVO 01

TEL :(00229)42 17 109 FAX:00229-5038 6466

PORTO NOVO BENIN REPUBLIC.

E-MAIL:::  africandevelopment0@outlook.fr

 

Sir

APPLICATION FOR THE RELEASE AND SUBSEQUENT TRANSFER OF MY INHERITANCE FUNDS OF $11,300,000.00 MILLION FROM ACCOUNT NUMBER 18463464711.

I am MR……….. a family partner  and next of kin to late MRS.JOY LAKE, your decease customer who held the above account number with your bank, and who died in AMERICAN PLANE CRASH,ON JANUARY 31ST 2006.

I discovered the said account details in her bedroom,and as her next of kin I humbly appeal to your esteemed office to release and transfer these funds into my nominated receiving bank account detail stated below.

1)Your Full Name:

2)Your Bank Name:

3)Your Bank Address:

4)Your Age:

5)Marital Status:

6)Your Phone Number:

7)Your Fax Numbers:

8)Bank Account Number:

9)Receiving Country:

10)Your Occupation:

11)Swift Code:

12)Sex:

13)Your Religion:

14)E-Mail:

I shall appreciate your prompt attention to this application as I solemnly promise to abide by all your protocol and transactional requirements.

 

Wednesday, February 7th, 2018

 

My Response

Dearest Buddy,

I too am very fine, thank you for asking. I apologise for the delay in responding to you his time, but I believe that you will find my explanation satisfactory. You see, having read through your most recent correspondence, I think that I finally understand what is happening. I am not truly Mrs Lake Deceased next of kin, but you wish me to present myself as such in order for us to share in the bounties of her monies, abandoned when her life was tragically cut short.

Well, why the devil didn’t you just say so? I thoroughly enjoy a good ruse, especially when large quantities of money are involved. Why, my great uncle Dr. I. Jones was well known for his crazy adventures, wherein he carried out many a clever plot such as this. As luck would have it, we spent many an evening labouring over a glass of brandy and discussing his life. As such, I think it fair to say that I am well acquainted with the art of deception.

Now that I know the lay of land, to business, I say! First, the designation of ‘family partner’ is rather clumsy. Though the previously suggested title was immoral, it at least could be traced to an unlikely relation. Family partner simply sounds like I do business with the family. No, that will not do. Instead, I have come up with a far better plan, and completed the forms on this basis.

I have declared myself to be her seventh cousin. Now, technically speaking, there are members in my actual family who would, on that basis, have a far better claim to be her next of kin. While some of them do indeed have a stern telling off coming their way, I believe that I can avoid any drastic actions in this case. You see, I know a man who is rather good when it comes to false identities. He lives in Newcastle, in the UK, making him a Geordie named Le Forge. Such are his skills, that none even know his true name. And the French part of his identity? That is because his father is from Wales and his mother is from Puerto Rico, neither of which are France. This name is simply to throw people off the scent. See? I told you he was good.

Now, GLF has given me the papers necessary to assume the identity of Mr Tex Avery. Born in Texas – hence the name – I am Mrs Lake Deceased’s seventh cousin and sole remaining relative. In case questions are asked, I request that you send me all the details you hold on the deceased. This way, I can brush up on family history and so on. In the meantime, I shall work on my Texas accent. It isn’t brilliant, but frankly, it is the better of my American accents. Perhaps I will even purchase a cowboy hat.

In the meantime, I have completed the papers on this basis and have posted them to you. I attach a photograph of me doing so. The gloves are rather spiffing, don’t you think? Let me know when you receive the paperwork. I know that air mail can be a little slow at times.

Looking forward to our further nefarious dealings,

Mr S Clau … I mean, Mr T Avery.

post

 

Ibrahim Mantu

My beloved good Friend in Lord Jesus Christ,

I want to know if you have sent the application to the bank as I directed you. if you have not, please go ahead and send it to them,and Update me.

Thank you,
Mr.Ibrahi

 

My Response

Ibrahim,

Take the time to read my last response. It confirms that I have sent the form in the post. I also require feedback as to whether my plan is acceptable.

T. Avery, yee-haw.

 

Ibrahim Mantu

My beloved good Friend in Lord Jesus Christ,

I want to know if you have sent the application to the bank as I directed you. if you have not, please go ahead and send it to them,and Update me.

Thank you,
Mr.Ibrahi

 

My Response

Ibrahim,

I am rather concerned. You appear to have developed an inability to follow instructions. This does not bode well for our transaction, and makes me less willing to trust you. For the sake of our friendship, I shall do you the favour of copying my last e-mail below. If your next response does not contain direct reference to the points below, I shall be forced to consider our business relatiosnhip termianted due to incompetence on your part. To reiterate, however, the form has been completed and POSTED TO YOU VIA AIR MAIL.

(Previous longer e-mail pasted here)

 

Ibrahim Mantu

My beloved good Friend in Lord Jesus Christ,

I want to know if you are By indicating your interest I will send you the full details on how the business will be executed.

send your data.

Your Full Name.

Your Country.

Your Age.

Your Occupation.

Phone Number

Office Address

Please respond urgently and delete if you are not interested

TELEPHONE NUMBER +22967585346

Regards,

Thank you,

Mr.Ibrahi

 

My Response

Ibrahim,

Sadly, you have once again not read my previous e-mail. As per my warning, you may consider our business concluded at this unfortunately early stage. It is a shame as we both stood to profit, but as you are unwilling to respond to my points about family designations, my new identity for the duration of the ruse, or indeed confirm that this is indeed a ruse, I am unable to continue working with you. Frankly, I find your suddenly lapse attitude to my messages to be rather rude.

Do not contact me again unless you are going to apologise for your misbehaviour and offer a response to my rather lengthy e-mail.

T Avery

 

*** And that was the final e-mail sent. ***

 

 

I never received another response. In a way, I was a little sad about that as I rather liked the thought that he would apologise for his shorter e-mails and start responding to my ‘plan’. But, ‘twas not to be. Still, the main thing is that from Sunday until Wednesday, I kept him pretty busy with my stupid ramblings.

 

So, what do you all think? Did you enjoy my escapades? Have you ever done anything similar? Let me know below.

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15 comments

    1. Thank you kindly; I had real fun with that one. To be honest, I’m surprised that they lasted that long too. There were so many moments that should have given the game away, but there you go. The main thing is, I distracted them for a few days 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. It just amazes me that they sometimes take so long to catch on. I mean, I’ve got one (that I think may have given up now) where I told them that I think they’re a malicious machine workng for Skynet because they’re initials are AI, and they still kept responding for a while.

        Like

  1. I searched this email address on google and of course found your site. Reason for searching the email addresss is I’m doing the exact same thing and getting the same emails as you haha. We’re obviously related too no doubt, I’ve taken the death of Joy Lake terribly bad.

    Liked by 1 person

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