Santa Paula Times

Scam: Fax is obviously fake, but the method of loot taking not clear

October 20, 2004
Santa Paula News

A new one has hit the scammers’ radar with a missive that is obviously fake but the actual method of the taking of your loot is not as clear.

By Peggy KellySanta Paula TimesA new one has hit the scammers’ radar with a missive that is obviously fake but the actual method of the taking of your loot is not as clear.A Santa Paula resident received an impressive fax from a Dr. Amos Tilehle, supposedly from the Republic of South Africa, urging the recipient not to miss the chance to be involved in a multi-million dollar business deal.Dr. Tilehle is promising remittance of $15,600,000 “into your account,” and then a payment for your trouble, a heady prospect without any accountability.Noting that the offer is highly confidential, Dr. Tilehle claims he is a “top official of the Presidency” holding an overdue payment in U.S. funds.“These funds represent certain percentage of a contract value executed by a foreign company, which was deliberately over invoiced to the tune of $15,600,000.”“To the tune of” does not quite ring true as South African slang but nevertheless Dr. Tilehle goes on to explain details of the proposed deposit into the victim’s account. He also notes that the government is “seeking your moral and financial cooperation to be the beneficiary of the excess amount because the law forbids serving government officials from owning or operating foreign accounts. I have the authority of my colleagues to propose 25 percent compensation to you, 75 percent compensation to us.”
The $3.9 million is tempting indeed and Dr. Tilehle assures the recipient – Attn: The President/CEO, as a matter of fact – that the transaction is “100 percent safe, risk-free and legal and we strongly insist on a 100 percent utmost confidentiality as we are still in active government services. I have reposed my confidence in you trusting that you will not betray us.”In the closing paragraph Dr. Tilehle reiterates the legality of the transaction, a “mutually beneficial rewarding business relationship.”What’s the catch?It could just be the fax numbers, the only form of return communication for those who want to jump on Dr. Tilehle’s deal.There are two fax numbers listed, one a general fax and the other touted as a direct fax.Trying to verify the fax numbers proved to an impossible task but there are scams out there – usually phone numbers offering a great deal or to clear up a legal misunderstanding – that can run up hundreds or even thousands of dollars in charges to victims’ phone bills. The victims are then left to wrangle over the charges with their local telephone service provider, often not successfully.Remember that if receive a fax making such claims of instant riches, don’t bother to get back in touch with the sender to say no thanks: phone or fax charges could be the whole gist of the rip-off.