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Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq.
Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq., Immigration Lawyer
Category: Immigration Law
Satisfied Customers: 105582
Experience:  10+ years of experience in various aspects of U.S. Immigration Law.
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Is there a new international traveling allowance to travel

Customer Question

Is there a new international traveling allowance to travel out of Nigeria?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Immigration Law
Expert:  Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq. replied 1 year ago.

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.

Have you met this person in person before or only over the internet?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Met him on the internrt. We have been talking for 2 months. Thee Nigerian Embassy bis asking him for this monry only to sshoe when he is boarding the plane. They will not keep the money
Expert:  Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq. replied 1 year ago.

So in other words, he is not your husband and you have not met him in person, only the internet, correct? I assume he is asking for you to send that money to help him?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
He has been work ing in Nigeria for approx 1 mo. Hr worked in Johannesburg for 2 month before going to abujs to finish s road. Hr ius not my husband yet
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Abuja
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Don't think he is as scammer. He is going to scsan me a copy of his check.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
He does not want to keep the $, hr says he vonly has to shoebit to the airline staff. It's s new law?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
His credit card is damaged and hr needs to get home to get it corrected
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
He has his ticket already
Expert:  Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq. replied 1 year ago.

Of course he does. Did you send him money for a visa, passport, and/or ticket? And ho can you be sure he is not a scammer? What if I told you the Nigerian government does not require such a fee?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
He is just trying to board the pl
Expert:  Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq. replied 1 year ago.

No. He is trying to make it sound like you have to send the money NOW so that you don't discover the truth. I ask again, did you send him money for a visa, passport, and/or ticket?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I did send him some money because he needed to pay his hotel bill, as his credit card not usable. I would like to tell him that the givt does not charge that fee
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
He is coming here to go to the bank
Expert:  Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq. replied 1 year ago.

Yes, unfortunately, ALL lies. You will never see him. He will take the money and run. The next story will be that he got stuck somewhere changing planes. I have heard this story many times. We get at least two or three questions like this on the website per week. Please keep an open mind. I almost fell into this myself once, so I know how you feel.

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 (in your case, his credit card is damaged, but same principal), 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:

http://ghana.usembassy.gov/romance_scam.html (yes, it is a link from the U.S. Embassy in Ghana, but it applies to all different countries and I have seen this scam come from Russia, the Ukraine, the Philippines, many other countries, and yes, even Nigeria).

And here is another link from the government of Ghana:

http://www.ghanaimmigration.org/FAQ.html

and another:

http://travel.state.gov/pdf/international_financial_scams_brochure.pdf

and another:

http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/financial_scams/financial_scams_4554.html?action=/travel/cis_pa_tw/cis/cis_960.html

and another from the U.S. Embassy in Moscow:

http://moscow.usembassy.gov/dating-scams.html

and one more:

http://romancescams.org/

Whatever you do, do NOT send any 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. You can even ask additional questions without additional charge even after leaving a positive rating. Thank you for your understanding.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I sent him no money for s ticket, passport etc. Justbtom help him pay his hotel bill b/c hi
Expert:  Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq. replied 1 year ago.

It doesn't matter. It is the same scam. Would you like me to show you similar stories so that you will believe me?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
No. I am mad and heartbroken
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
He said he was legitimate. How dumb am i
Expert:  Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq. replied 1 year ago.

Believe me, I understand. As I said, the same thing almost happened to me a few years ago and if not for a friend cluing me in, I would have fallen victim myself. So now I do everything I can to stop others from falling victim. Someone two days ago had already sent $10,000! Someone the week before that had sent close to $14,000! These people are very good at what they do, but this is NOT your fault. You are NOT dumb. Imagine living in a third world country, receiving that kind of money, they reinvest it to produce legitimate looking documents, they hire actors to do videos and pictures, etc. etc. It's all a big money making scam and as I said, they are VERY good at it. So whatever you do, do NOT send any more money. I would report him to the FBI. Here is a link:

http://www.ic3.gov/default.aspx

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. Thank you!

Expert:  Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq. replied 1 year ago.

Hello Diann. I'm just following up with you to see how everything is going. Did my answer help? Please let me know. Thank you!