Find the answers to many of your expat questions here

View Latest Posts

You're missing out...

As a member you can enjoy exclusive info and offers.


Property Scam?

Posted by Spidey-189686 - Created: 13 years ago
0 0
Sorry no image available

10 replies (Showing replies: 1 to 10)

Sorry no image available
Posted by Spidey-189686 - 13 years ago

Thanks very much indeed all (especially MikeP and TonyP) for helping to get to the bottom of this.

AngloINFO never ceases to amaze me

All the best


PS: I`ve now got 100,000 Euro`s worth of Swiss Francs in a suitcase on my desk here, available to the highest bidder...........................

Sorry no image available
Posted by TonyP-191937 - 13 years ago

Found it!  The Italians who buy without visiting.


After you have arranged the trip, they say they only have the cash in dollars or Swiss Francs, and can you bring some Euros so that they can change it.....



Sorry no image available
Posted by MikeP-180526 - 13 years ago


I'm also not sure how it would work for a house purchase unless it's via the forged bank draft route,  but you can be sure that if there's a Nigerian involved,  and Spidey did say "He sounded a lot like an African trying to sound like an Italian" then let's just say that a high degree of cynicism would be justified!

Sorry no image available
Posted by TonyP-191937 - 13 years ago

I am not sure how the Nigerian scam will work for a house purchase.  You cant just pay for a house in funny money and get away with it.

The cash on the side deal as is carried out by your average citizen, is always cash, and is usually done in the Notaires office in his absence as part of the proceedings.  French Notaires have notoriously weak bladders.

The usual Nigerian scam asks for help getting money out of Nigeria. " I have misappropriated 10M dollars, and you can have 1M if you help me" Somewhere along the way the trickster needs some funds for expenses, or gets hold of your bank credentials in order to siphon off funds.


Sorry no image available
Posted by ivi - 13 years ago

Ah, so it is funny money (counterfeit bank notes) and fake drafts, and if some of the deal gets done 'in the black' (as these guys are pushing for) then hey guess who gets a house with a HUGE discount.  And the seller is not covered because the Notaire's insurance doesn't cover the loss as the money was undeclared, did not travel through the Notaire's account.... etc. etc.


Nice.  And people who suggest there is no risk in this kind of a transaction obviously don't know what they are talking about.   Undeclared money is a risk and it can be a big one. 

Sorry no image available
Posted by ivi - 13 years ago

Can't wait.

I have been offered deals like this, so have my friends and relatives.  All with very similar modus operandi.  Nothing came off, all too dodgey and all died when guarantees, more information etc. was asked for.  I never did find out what the sting was,  but I am interested......

Sorry no image available
Posted by MikeP-180526 - 13 years ago

How the scam works.  The con man's mails are in blue, mine in red. 

Modus operandi : the crooks send a forged bank draft.  Your bank accepts it as it is a top quality forgery, and therefore credit your account.  You (if you are gullible) send off the goods and the balance (in this case to the fictitious shipping company), and several weeks later, the issuing bank advise your bank that the draft was a forgery.  This can take up to 6 weeks until your bank notify you and debit your account.

In this case, the idiot gave himself enough rope to hang himself,  including the name and address of his thieving associates in London and Lagos,  sent a forged bank draft which was handed over to the police, and arrests were made.

I've removed identifying details !


Reply to advert :

  I saw your advert and i'm interested in purcahsing your nice car with the price £???.
     Get back to me with the following infos.if it is still available.
{1} It's present condition
{2} An updated pic{if any}
{3}Your last offer.
    Payment will be made with a cheque if it is still available.Hope to hear from you.

My reply :


I don't any longer have the particular car you have expressed an interest,
but a very similar one, a 1999 model, Flame Red, in excellent condition,
122,000 km, recently overhauled suspension and braking system.

The price is £3500  -  not negotiable.

Where are you located?

I look forward to hearing from you.

Thank you.


Thanks for your correspondence.I got your  email.i wouldn;t mind taking the 1999 Model .Am in urgent need of it.I will take the Car  for £3000. Lets seal a deal at that price .Consider the Car already sold to me.I'm based i London,i  would have love to come down and inspect it but am presently away on a seminar to Holland.As soon as i saw your advertised for sale,i  had to get across to one of my business associates in the Uk telling him i've got the CAR  i'm searching and that he should make my funds (£5000)available in payment of some fuel equipments i supplied to him.He assured me he would make the payments (cheque)  available.
  I would instruct him to get the cheque across to you (ASAP) and as soon as you receive the payments i would want you to get it cashed  immediately.As soon as you are through with this you would need to deduct your amount of (£3000) from the total(£5000) and send the balance(£2,000) to my reputable shipper via western union
money transfer who would be coming over for the pickup of the CAR and also handle the necessary transfer titles on my behalf.
     So i will need your Full Name,Mailimg Address And Phone Number so i can send it to him {my associate} to send the payment right away.My shipper (Today Shipping) would be responsible for the pick up .Hoping to hear from you.Thanks

Hello Mr. xxxxxxxx

Thank you for your mail.  The price for the car is £3500 - not negotiable.

If this is acceptable to you,  then please send the cheque made out in the
name of my business (xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx) as it is a company owned vehicle
to :


Tel : + 44 xxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Please let me have your full details/address in order to complete the
transfer documents. Please send me a copy of the cheque by FAX to + 44 xxxxxxxxxxx along with your other details.  I would also require contact details for Today Shipping if they are collecting the vehicle,  however if you are in London I can arrange delivery as one of our drivers goes up nearly every day.

Thank you

  I did send you an email.Just to update you.My associate contacted me and informed me that you will receive the payment for the car by tomorrow.Do advise me as soon as you receive the payment so that necessary shipping arrangement can be  done in earnest.As regard the necessary information needed for the transfer documents.Here it is below:



You can contact the shipping company via this mail address: xxxxxxxxxxx@xxx.com Thanks

             How are you today?To be candid about this transaction,I told you from day ONE that I am not at home I am at a seminar conference in Holland up till date.I know you will be wondering why shipping is involved in this regard,I am sending the car to west Africa where my wife and I use to sell fairly used car.Thanks for the acknowledgement of the payment.Kindly take care of the transfer of the balance on the payment to my shippers  so that they can come for pick up at your location.You are to transfer the fund via western union money transfer to the shipper's accountant according to the director of the shipping company.The accountant is the person that will receive the fund and account it to the company.The infomation of the accountant is below

            As soon as the fund is transfered,kindly get back to me with the necessary info such as: CONTROL NUMBER,AMOUNT SENT,SENDER'S NAME AND ADDRESS,TEST QUESTION AND ANSWER.(Pls test question and answer is very important cos it serves as the security for possesion of the fund.).I am aware of the transfer charges,kindly deduct it from my balance of £2,000 when making the transfer.I hope the info given above will help you enough in making the transfer.  After all the payment transactions is done, then Buyer and Seller will proceed further. The Buyer will be entitled to possession of this Property after all the above requirement is completed. The shippers will be coming up for pick up of the Property from the Seller and ship it to Buyer. In order to be a valid agent who represents the Buyer to pick up the Property he must do the following: ---(1) Provide the Power of Attorney letter to Seller at point of pick up,which would have been signed by the Buyer showing that the Bu
 yer gives the authority to the agent to pick up the Property from the Seller and hand it over to the Buyer. (2) The agent must provide two forms of valid identification (i.e: state ID, driving license, working ID, passport, etc.) (3) The agent will do the full inspection of the Property. (4) The agent will sign the change of ownership of the Property. (5) The Seller will then hand over the Property, signed the title paper and documents to agent as the sign of complete transaction between the Seller and the Buyer. (6) The agent will do the rest of his/her tasks which include payment of taxes,insurance cover,shipping, ETC to the Buyer and make sure the Buyer gets his Property. The sale is final, after the agent fully inspects the Property and transfer of ownership is completed. The Seller would not be responsible for any actions taken by the agent and/or the Buyer towards the Property. The Seller represents that it has legal title of the Property and full authority to sell the
  property. Seller also represents that the property is sold free and clear of all liens, indebtedness, or liabilities. I'll like the transfer of the fund to be supervised by you personally especially for the sefety of the funds.I would be expecting your email with the western union money transfer info as soon as possible.Thanks and have a nice day. 

N.B  The shippers are to be prepaid before coming for pick up .I hope you understand this?


Sorry no image available
Posted by MikeP-180526 - 13 years ago


It is a West African scam.  I will post details later of how it works so that all can be warned when trying to sell things.

Sorry no image available
Posted by Spidey-189686 - 13 years ago

I agree Cheryl, this is not the Wild west and I don`t think it is an elaborate scam to rip off the entire estate. I do however think it is a new  scheme to try and earn some quick and easy cash and I am fairly confident that it is a west African scam.

I`m not sure how it will work but I`m certainly not going to recommend taking things any further.

The person I spoke to today would not give any details about their background, a notaires details, company names, they would not be prepared to travel down here and would not be prepared to meet a legal representative of my friend, it had to be him and him only.

How can they expect someone to travel up to Paris on the strength of a couple of calls on a mobile phone number?


Sorry no image available
Posted by Cheryl Lincoln - 13 years ago

Come on guys - property is often bought "off spec".  If something interesting comes onto the market, it is not unusual for bids to go in without seeing the property.   The speed in which property is bought and sold on the Cote d'Azur sometimes makes it impossible for someone who is desparately seeking property to drop everything to travel to see it - don't forget the buyer gets a "cooling off" period in which to back out of the deal once his offer is accepted.  I don't think you should make too much of someone not viewing the property.  If the price is right, the location and size etc is right, it is just not that out of the ordinary for prospective buyers to try and get their foot in the door before anyone else - that is what property dealing is all about.

These guys may well be phoneys..and I'm not suggesting you should throw caution to the wind.. but's lets not all get too excited regarding having your entire estate ripped off under your nose....the money goes into your account, you don't get handed a big wedge of counterfeit euros.  You don't hand over the keys until you are advised by your notaire that he/she is in funds.  This is Europe, not the Wild West!