Will the 419 Sanction Threat Work?

419 Scams - The Real Scammers  The Motivation Behind 419 Scams  Will the 419 Sanction Threat Work?  

Adaora ReportsNigeria; capitol: Abuja; location: West African coast.

Monday, December 2, 2002 


Will the 419 Sanction Threat Work?

Deadline to curb 419 scams   Double standards

419 scam victims should be carry their share of the blame

Rebuttal by C. A. Pascale of the 419 Coalition Web site

Response to Rebuttal by Annie McGuire of Fraud Aid.com

A Lost Opportunity - For Who?

The recent decision by the Miss World organizers to move the venue of the contest from Nigeria to London has attracted different views. The government very much regrets it because an opportunity to see the country from a lens other than that of 419 was lost. The Moslem community welcomed it and believed that it should never have been brought to their own turf. Others could not be bothered either way and do not see what the fuss was all about.

Deadline to curb 419 scams

The United States and the European Union has given the Nigerian government until December 15, 2002 to rein in the fraudsters or face sanctions. Off the record, government officials see this as unachievable and even impossible. However, they want to be seen to be doing something and they are working hard at it.  However, coupled with the fact that there are more pressing issues to deal with, the country has neither the means nor the manpower to undertake such a Herculean task. .

Double standards

This stance by the West has proven difficult for the government and Nigerians to understand. They see it as nothing but high-handedness on the part of a 'two-faced' West. 

On the one hand the West wants Nigeria to put her house in order, but on the other hand it is unwilling to hold the victims accountable.  Nigerians have always seen the so-called 'victims'  as criminals as well because they collude with the 419'ers to break the laws of Nigeria - handle stolen goods, and launder money. Yet the US and Europe are silent on this fact. (See Rebuttal)

419 scam victims should be carry their share of the blame

In principle there is nothing wrong in asking Nigeria to deal with these people but it should go both ways - without victims there will be no scammers. Despite all the warnings they still willingly part with their money then they have only themselves to blame. The decent, hardworking Nigerian abhors this scam but they see the victims and the scammers in the same light. For it is only a person with a criminal mind who will abet the transfer of ill gotten money. The fact that the West has historically been a willing custodian of funds looted by Nigerian leaders makes it all the more difficult for Nigerians to understand why they are crying wolf now.

 - Adaora, Editor, Fraud Aid.com Nigerian Desk

fraudaid@fraudaid.com, Attn: Adaora


Rebuttal by C. Pascale of the 419 Coalition


By the way, Annie, Adaora is was off base on this point:

"On the one hand the West wants Nigeria to put her house in order, but on the other hand it is unwilling to hold the victims accountable.  Nigerians have always seen the so- called 'victims'  as criminals as well because they collude with the 419'ers to break the laws of Nigeria - handle stolen goods, and launder money."  (see
Double standards, above)

This may be true of Classic 419 but it is certainly not true in the case of the so-called "legal" 419's like the Will Scam; Goods and Services 419; Contract Repurchase 419; Real Estate 419; Charitable Organization 419; Extortion 419 etc. in which there is no case whatever to made for victim as criminal.  And, of course, the Nigerian Government does nothing much to control these types of 419 either.  But apologists for the 419ers and for the successive Nigerian Governments'  failure to make a sustained effort to control 419 always tend to conveniently forget these FACTS, which of course do not fit in with the
"victims as criminals" philosophy.

This "victim as criminal" philosophy is not accepted by any other Government than the Nigerian, and rightfully so, as it is simply not accurate.  It is really just Nigerian propaganda, and has been thoroughly discredited internationally.

The demand side of 419 can be approached through education.  But  the only way to deal with supply side 419 emanating from Nigeria is for the Nigerian government to make a sustained, tangible, quantifiable effort against the 419ers operating with impunity from within their borders, to include arrests, convictions, asset seizures, and repatriations of 419ed funds in anything like the magnitude of the 419  operations themselves.  This successive Nigerian Governments have not been willing to do.  It's not like they haven't
had nearly 20 years already to deal effectively with this matter....

And THAT is why,  unless they start doing this, the Government of Nigeria DESERVES to be sanctioned over non-performance in counter-419 operations, largely spurious bleats of "hey, what about Your guys" notwithstanding.

I'm not sure why you allow propaganda like Adaora's piece on your site without a counterbalance piece, but this is a free country with free speech after all so whatever y'all do is Ok with us  :)  :)

Pascale, Coordinator
419 Coalition


Response to Rebuttal by Annie McGuire of Fraud Aid.com


Hi Pascal!  Thank you for your rebuttal.  It's great, and brings to light a whole new range of frauds that will help our readership's awareness.


The first issue I wish to address here is that the editorials are always open to rebuttal.  There would be no point in printing views without allowing other opinions to be aired.  We always welcome commentary from knowledgeable sources.


The importance of Adaora's editorials is to allow our readership to see what is going on at the other end of these scams as far as the Nigerian general public is concerned.  What are they thinking?  How do they feel about the scams? Why do they feel the way they do?  

Neither Adoara nor Fraud Aid was aware of the alternate variety of scams arising from West Africa.  Of the hundreds of Nigerian Scam Letters in the Fraud Aid database, the majority of which have yet to be posted, not one is free of criminal intent on the part of the targeted victim.  Other than one involving the threat of bad credit reports if the target does not pay a given amount listed on a phony invoice (crime: extortion), they are all of the Classic variety.


I look forward to hearing from you again.  Every site needs a creditworthy watchdog, especially in our line of business.


Annie McGuire



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