Scambait Theater Presents:

Map Nigeria            

A Lad Insane

A Scambait in Five Acts, starring Mr. J. Dog, Acclaimed Internet Thespian.

This scambait is pure fun. I used the simple ploy of making the lads think their e-mail account had been hacked by the notorious Usman Bello. I picked this name because the surname of "Bello" shows up quite a bit in 419 scam letters. "Usman Bello" is commonly used as a bogus name in Nigeria just as "John Smith" is in America. I figured that any 419 con artist would assume that he or she had been hacked by another 419 con artist if the name "Usman Bello" were used. The "you've been hacked ploy" worked magnificently and many scamalicious hijinks ensued. 

Dramatis Personae:

James Chume aka James Khume:  419 Con Artistť

Barrister Mike Williams: 419 Con Artistť

Dr. Calvin Crocker: 92 or 93 year old (he forgets) Wealthy Victim.

Lionel Drinkwater: Trusted nephew of Dr. Calvin Crocker


Act I -- In Which the Usual Lies Are Propounded by All Parties

[Original Message]
From: james chume <>
Date: 11/10/2003 3:04:10 AM
Subject: hello
Rue du Gouverneur Bayol Cotonou
 Telex 539 ECOBANK
I have the courage to ask for your assistance to handle this important and confidential business believing that you will never let me down either now or in future. I am the MANAGER of ECOBANK BENIN. There is an account opened in this bank in 1980 and since 1990 nobody has operated on this account again. After going through some old files in the records I discovered that if I do not remit this money out urgently it will be forfeited for nothing. The owner of this account is Mr. Peter Smith, a foreigner and a miner geologist by profession and he died since 1990. No other person knows about this account or any thing concerning it. The account has no other beneficiary and my investigation proved to me as well that this company does not know anything about this account and the amount involved is (USD 25M) twenty Five million United States Dollars). I want to transfer the twenty Five million United States Dollars into a safe foreigners account abroad but I dont know any foreigner. I am only contacting you as a foreigner because this money can not be approved to a local bank here but can only be approved to any foreign account because the money is in us dollars and the former owner of the account is Mr Peter Smith is a foreigner too.I know that this message will come to you as a surprise as we don't know our selves before but be sure that it is real and a genuine business. I only got your contact address from my secretary who operates computer with believe in God that you will never let me down in this business. You are the only person that I have contacted in this business so please reply urgently so that I will inform you the next step to take urgently. Send also your private telephone and fax number including the full details of the account to be used for the deposit. I want us to meet face to face or sign a binding agreement to bind us together so that you can receive this money into a foreign account or any account of your choice where the fund will be safe. I will fly to your country for withdrawal and sharing and other investments. I am contacting you because of the need to involve a foreigner with foreign account and foreign beneficiary. I need your full co-operation to make this work fine because the management is ready to approve this payment to any foreigner who has correct information of this account which I will give to you later immediately if you are able and with capability to handle such
amount in strict confidence and trust according to my instructions and advice for our mutual benefit because this opportunity will never come again in my life. I need truthful person in this business because I don't want to make mistake. I need your strong assurance and trust. With my position now in the office I can transfer this money to any foreigners reliable account which you can provide with assurance that this money will be intact pending my physical arrival in your country for sharing> and i want to remaind you that your share has been caculated at 35% of the total sum. I am waiting for your urgent reply so that i will give you more information about this transaction.
Charle con sus amigos online usando CHAT 123


Dear Mr. Khume:
I will be glad to assist; please send me details at once.
Lionel Drinkwater
Drinkwater Financial Services


Lionel then thinks about some problem with Chume's original letter and immediately sends a second e-mail asking for clarifications


----- Mensaje original -----


Fecha: Lunes, Noviembre 10, 2003 6:47 am

Asunto: RE: hello
Dear Mr. Chume:
How did Mr. Peter Smith die? I need some background information if  I am to stand as his next of kin. Also, is your name Mr. James Chume or Mr. James Khume? There is a discrepancy between your e-mail address name and the name you use in the body of your letter to me. Please clarify.

I have visited Benin before in 1998. I was there with my church and we evangelized for Jesus Christ and gave powdered milk to the childern along with Bibles in your language. Did you get a Bible? Would you like a Bible? I can send several Bibles if you wish.I am certain that God will bless us in this misadventure.


Yours in Christ Jesus,

Lionel Drinkwater


[Original Message]
From: james chume <>
Date: 11/14/2003 12:19:43 AM
Subject: Re: RE: hello

Dear Lionel

thanks for your reply, I can get you a copy of the death certificate just it will take some time, please if you want it to be convince good I will get it for you through an attorney, please if you will send me bible I will be great full.
As to the name itís some error, my name is Mr. James chume.
Bye I hope to hear from you soonest.

Dear Mr. Chume:

I do so apologize for having not spelled your name correctly, please forgive me.
I do not need the death certificate. I just need to know the date, location of death, and where he died. In most courts that is acceptable. What language do you speak? I will look for a Bible in your mother tongue. Now we should proceed with this transaction. How do we get started?
Lionel Drinkwater
Drinkwater Financial Services

Two weeks elapse with no contact from Mr. Chume. Enter Barrister Williams stage right:

Dear Sir,
I am the attorney to Mr. James khume he asked me to get this death certificate and send across to you. If you have any question please feel free to ask me.
Thanks and bye till I hear from you.
Barr. Williams

An e-mail with an attachment from Barrister Williams contains the death certificate for Peter Smith:

Note the fateful date of April 22. Most deaths occur on April 21 or April 22 in 419 scam letters. Typically, the dead people were killed in a motor accident on Nigeria's "Highway of Death" -- the Sagbama Expressway.