Hello! My name is***** and I am a licensed attorney with more than 13 years of experience. I am here to assist you with your questions. Please understand that if I ask you for additional information, you are NOT charged again and our communications are NOT timed. So please see this as a relaxed conversation between friends. I am here to help.
I assume you have not met this friend before in person, just over the internet, Skype, etc.?
I have to run out for a bit so I cannot stay logged on to receive your response. I assume that you have not met this person in person before. If I am mistaken, please let me know.
Be very careful with this. These are generally romance scams. We get at least two or three questions like this on the website per week.
Normally the scam starts with trying to establish a romantic relationship, perhaps just a friendship at first. They also may claim to be a citizen of the UK or US or wherever so that you would not suspect they have any ulterior motive. They pull at your heartstrings by telling stories of hardship or tragedy that they have suffered in their life. At some point they want to come visit. They may ask you to send money for a passport and/or plane ticket. They may tell you that they have money, perhaps even that they are wealthy, but their money is tied up or something like that, perhaps they tie it into a tragedy or something. Then the next step is when they supposedly have the passport and plane ticket, they suddenly come up with this Basic Travel Allowance or (BTA) which is supposedly to show authorities that they have enough money to fund their trip. This is a lie. There is no such thing. They ask you to send that money so they can put it into a bank account to show the authorities. This is just another method to steal money from you. Then the next part of the scam would be when they are supposed to arrive. You wait for them at the airport and they never show up. A few days go by, you get extremely worried, none of your methods of communication work, and then suddenly a "friend" or "relative" of the scammer contacts you to let you know that she has been detained/arrested by authorities for carrying something illegal, I have heard of unregistered gold and they say it would have been a gift for you (perhaps to pay you back for the money you sent). The friend or relative of the scammer then asks for you to send money to bribe or pay fines in order to have the scammer released. From there, I have not heard of how else they are able to get money out of people. Of course there are variations to the scheme, but that's pretty much how it goes.
Here is a link that you can go to for more information:
And here is another link from the government of Ghana:
and another from the U.S. Embassy in Moscow:
and one more:
Whatever you do, do NOT send money!
My goal is to provide you with excellent service – if you feel you have received anything less, please reply back as I am happy to address follow-up questions and there is no additional charge. Also, should you need to chat on the phone, private email or need help reviewing documentation, I am happy to do so for a small additional cost. Let me know if you are interested in these – I am happy to give you more details! When we are done, if you would be so kind as to leave a positive rating for my service, I would sincerely ***** ***** You can do that by clicking on the 3rd, 4th or 5th stars if you see them, or the smiley faces if you see them. If you do not see any stars or smiley faces, please at least leave a THANK YOU for me so I can let the administrators know. Your question thread does NOT close, so you can ask additional questions without additional charge even after leaving a positive rating. Thank you for your understanding.
I do not know why you are not responding, but you are not charged per question, per response, nor per answer. So after I give you my answer, you can continue to ask me questions without additional charge until you are satisfied. I apologize if it is a site issue that you posted and the post did not go through.
In case you don't believe me and need more examples, here are a few links where you should focus more on the story of each individual, not my answer which is the same:
Let me know if you need anything else, but please do not forget to rate me positively. You can do that by clicking on the 3rd, 4th or 5th stars if you see them, or the smiley faces if you see them. If you do not see the stars or smiley faces, please at least leave a THANK YOU for me so I can let the administrators know. Also, we do NOT finish just because it says "Rate to Finish" or something like that. Your question does NOT close and you can continue to ask questions without additional charge on the same question thread even after you leave a positive rating. Thank you for your understanding!
My friend, if I do not hear from you, I will add you to my list of people that have been scammed so that I can help other people not be scammed. I almost fell into this trap myself, so I know how you feel and I make it a mission in life to stop these types of scams. At the very least, you should report this to the FBI. You can do so at www.ic3.gov.
Please don't forget that positive rating. I only keep mentioning it because if you can believe it, about 30% of people on this site don't leave a positive rating and since I am not given a salary to be here, it's as if I spent my time responding for free. So you can understand, that's like working 40 hours per week, 5 days a week and not being compensated for every Friday and most Thursdays. Talk about unfair! So I hope you leave that positive rating. Your question does NOT close if you forgot to ask something. You aren't charged again if you respond on the same thread. If you don't see the stars by my name, just let me know. Thank you for your understanding.
Hello. I'm just following up with you to see how everything is going. Did my answer help? Please let me know. Thank you!
Hello. I'm just following up with you again to see how everything is going. Did my answer help? Please let me know. Thank you!
Hello. It's been a few months. So what finally happened with this case? I'd like to know so maybe I can help others in the future. I hope you respond. Thank you.
Thank you for your kindness and respect. I hope you at least reported it to the FBI.