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SCARS™ Scam Basics: 419

Romance Scam Variation: Inheritance

Another variation of the romance scam is when the scammer insists they need to marry in order to inherit millions of dollars of gold left by a father, uncle, or grandfather.

A young woman will contact a victim and tell them of their plight: not being able to remove the gold from their country as they are unable to pay the duty or marriage taxes. The woman will be unable to inherit the fortune until she gets married, the marriage is a prerequisite of the father, uncle or grandfather’s will.

The scammer convinces their victim they are sincere until they are able to build up enough of a rapport to ask for thousands of dollars to help bring the gold into the victim’s country. The scammer will offer to fly to the victim’s country to prove they are a real person so the victim will send money for the flight.

But The Scammer Never Arrives!

The victim will contact the scammer to ask what happened, and the scammer will provide an excuse such as not being able to get an exit visa, or an illness, theirs or a family member. Scammers are very adept at knowing how to “play” (manipulate) their victims – sending love poems, sex games in emails, building up a “loving relationship” with many promises of “one day we will be married”.

In the case of this scam against a MAN – when an African is impersonated, it will often be photos of unknown African actresses that will be used to lure the victim into believing they are talking to that person.