Nigerian Advance Fee Fraud
The Advance Fee Fraud (AFF) is known internationally as "4-1-9" fraud after the section of the Nigerian penal code which addresses fraud schemes.
(BTW, it is pronounced 4-1-9, not four-nineteen.)
You've most probably been approached via email to help some poor soul smuggle millions out of some war torn province in return for a generous finder's fee.
"A renowned psychiatrist from UC Irvine was duped into squandering at least $1.3 million of his family's fortune on a Nigeria Internet scam, according to a lawsuit recently filed by his son.
The son, also an Orange County doctor, said his father - Dr. Louis A. Gottschalk - gave as much as $3 million over a 10-year period in response to an Internet plea that promised the doctor a generous cut of a huge sum of cash trapped in African bank accounts in exchange for money advances.
Gottschalk - who at 89 still works at the UCI campus medical plaza that bears his name - said in court papers that the losses were caused by "some bad investments."
Guy Gottschalk is asking a judge to remove his father as administrator of the $8-million family partnership that was set up for tax purposes after the death of his mother in 1993. A hearing is set for March 14.
The suit alleges that Louis Gottschalk destroyed bank records to cover up the amount of his losses.
"While it seems unlikely, even ludicrous, that a highly educated doctor like [Gottschalk] would fall prey to such an obvious con, that is exactly what happened," wrote Guy Gottschalk's attorney in court papers."
LA Times March 2, 2006
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