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Zoey_JD
Zoey_JD, Criminal attorney
Category: Fraud Examiner
Satisfied Customers: 23534
Experience:  Active member of the NYS bar since 1989
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Ive been scammed by a will scammer of a few $$$$$$$$

Customer Question

hi ive been scammed by a will scammer of a few $$$$$$$$
Submitted: 5 months ago.
Category: Fraud Examiner
Expert:  Zoey_JD replied 5 months ago.

Hello,

I'm Zoey and I'll be assisting you. Are you online now?

Expert:  Zoey_JD replied 5 months ago.

Can you explain what you mean by a will scammer? Were you told that you were coming into an inheritance for which you would have to pay a lot of money to collect?

Expert:  Zoey_JD replied 5 months ago.

I was hoping to hear from you before composing an answer, but I will post an answer anyway. If this isn't what you wanted to know, please reply on this question thread and clarify the nature of the scam, and I'll be happy to amend my answer.

I believe you have fallen for a very well-known inheritance fraud. When you're really the beneficiary of an estate, you don't have to pay for anything at all. The estate itself takes care of everything that's needed to distribute its funds, and it's only when there are no expenses left that the remainder is handed to the heirs, free and clear with no strings attached.

The "same surname inheritance scam" has been going on for generations. It is one of the oldest of the West African frauds and precedes the advent of the internet. The Nigerians invented it, the Ghanaians and other West African and high scam countries adopted it, and it's as successful now as it was then. Here's how it works:

Scammers make countless phone calls and/or send thousands of emails and letters out every day in the hope that they find someone who believes he may actually have a missing wealthy relative somewhere and who will take the bait.

If you receive such a message and follow it up you will be told that the money is yours but that you will first have to lay out money for some reason or another to collect your inheritance. That's the #1 sign of an inheritance fraud.

If you pay the first fee, there will be another, and then another and then another. We see people here who have spent tens of thousands of dollars on phony legal tax or bank fees to get an inheritance that doesn't even really exist.

The scam comes complete with a phony lawyer and/or banker and with photoshopped documents. But all the scammer is doing is phishing for your personal information and looking to steal your money. He has nothing at all for you. There is no dead relative. You are not a beneficiary. There is no inheritance. The only money really available here is coming from your own bank account and being sent to a scammer.

Any time someone you don't know or some company you have never dealt with contacts you out of the blue to tell you that you have come into a windfall beyond your imagination, but that first you have to pay money out and/or reveal unnecessary sensitive personal information in order to collect it, it's a scam. It doesn't matter that the reason for the money request may make sense to you. Real heirs never have to pay anything to collect an inheritance.

The scammers are just hoping to dazzle you with thoughts of the millions which will be coming your way so that you will wire them all of your money.
You can read the history of this scam on Snopes.com.

http://www.snopes.com/fraud/advancefee/inherit.asp

If you can find out who and where your scammers really are, you could sue them for their fraud and get your money back. But these scammers use entirely phony names and contact information, and they request payment by untraceable means, such as Western Union or MoneyGram, so finding them will be a job for law enforcement or a private investigator.

Report them to your police and to Scamwatch.gov.au to warn others. Your prognosis for recovery of your money is low, as the odds are good that your scammers are not even in Australia, but unless the authorities or a private investigator can find out who and where your scammer really is so that he can be brought to justice, there is not much you can do except to warn others.

I am very sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but this is the harsh reality of internet scam.

Expert:  Zoey_JD replied 5 months ago.

Just checking in to see if you need more help or any clarification of my answer. If so, please reply here on this question thread.

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