scambuster419.co.uk: where 419 scam artists meet their match

scambuster419.co.uk: where 419 scam artists meet their match

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Introduction

The Scambusts

The General Practitioner

The Aristocrat II

The Massage Parlour Proprietor

The Football Club Manager

The Vicar V

The Astrologer

The Worm Sanctuary Owner

The Signwriter

The Brewer

The Member of Parliament II

The Door Furniture Specialist

The Inventor IV

The Retired Wing Commander IV

The Baker

The Farmer

The Hotelier

The Veterinary Surgeon

The Vicar IV

The Psychosexual Therapist

The Orphanage Director II

The Cess Pit Cleaner

The Dating Agency Proprietor

The Adult Video Director

The Retired Wing Commander III

The Inventor III

The Poultry Magnate III

The Poultry Magnate II

The Vicar III

The Miller

The Member of Parliament

The Lottery Winner

The Inventor II

The Circus Ringmaster

The Undertaker

The Retired Wing Commander II

The Butcher

The Vicar II

The Vicar

The Doctor of Economics

The Rubber Duck Manufacturer

The Orphanage Director

The Aristocrat

The Poet

The Poultry Magnate

The Retired Wing Commander

The Professor of Economics

The Inventor

Mapping Gilbert’s activities

Map of Gypping in the Marsh

The Global Scamming Community

Internet Fraud Information

Classified Advertisement Scams

Investment Scams

Job Vacancies in the Scamming Business

Internet Resources

Scambusting Advice

Scambusting Tips

Gilbert’s Guide to Sending Money to Scammers

Blank Western Union and MoneyGram Receipts

Reactions and Feedback

The Scammers’ Reactions

Feedback from Fans

Contact Details

Copyright Notice


The Hotelier


In which Gilbert is contacted by a fantastically wealthy refugee who wants to invest in the hotel business. What luck: Gilbert has been thinking of expanding Murray Towers and moving upmarket for some time now, so this looks like an offer that might be worth pursuing.

Cast of characters

  • Gilbert Murray – owner and manager of the Murray Towers hotel.
  • Scolla Sahili – allegedly a fabulously rich orphaned refugee from the western region of Darfur, currently residing in the Ivory Coast.
  • Dr Kone Mohammed – allegedly an employee of a security company based in Abidjan, into whose care Miss Sahili’s mother entrusted her family fortune before she died.


From: Scolla Sahili

To: Gilbert Murray

Subject: PLEASE HELP ME INVEST IN YOUR COUNTRY

Sent: Wed, 17 Aug 2005 20:29:56 +0300

Dear Beloved,

Please permit me to introduce myself formally as Scolla Sahili, hail from western region of Darfur in Sudan but presently taking refugee in Ivory Coast. I do not know all about you as I am obliged to seek into the confines of your heart and bring to your knowledge on how helpful your assistance matters to my future.

My late father Dr Mandey Sahili, former Chairman of the Board of Directors of the National Gold and Cotton Corporation of Sudan, died as a result of a power struggle between President Umar al-Bashir and the ousted parliament speaker Hasan al-Turabi, the main ideologue of Sudan’s Islamist government, while my mother died as a result of hypertension after our arrival to Ivory Coast.

It is my pleasure to contact you for a business venture which I intend to establish in your country. Though I have not met with you before, but I believe one has to risk confiding in someone to succeed sometimes in life. There is this family treasure box that contains a very huge amount of fifteen million, five hundred thousand dollars ($15.5 million) which my late mother deposited in a security company here in Ivory Coast upon our arrival.

Now I have decided to invest this money in your country or anywhere safe enough outside Africa due to security and political reasons. I want you to help me claim and retrieve this family treasure box from the custody of the security company and transfer it to your country for investment purposes in these areas:

  1. Telecommunication.
  2. The transport industry.
  3. Five-star hotel.
  4. Real estate management.

If you can be of an assistance to me I will be pleased to offer to you 15% of the total fund. Note that any delay in replying me will give me room in searching for another for the same purpose.

Best regard,

Miss Scolla Sahili


From: Gilbert Murray

To: Scolla Sahili

Subject: Is this for real?

Sent: Thu, 18 Aug 2005 15:48:57

Dear Miss Sahili,

I have just read the email that you sent to me yesterday. I can’t quite believe my luck, to tell you the truth: I run a small hotel in the Lincolnshire village of Gypping in the Marsh and I have been thinking of expanding the premises and moving upmarket for some time now, but funding has always been a problem. And then I receive an email out of the blue from someone (you) who says they are looking to invest in the hotel business.

Pardon me for asking, but are you being serious? That’s a huge amount of money you’re talking about. If indeed you are being serious, please get back to me with further details.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Best regards,

Gilbert Murray


From: Scolla Sahili

To: Gilbert Murray

Subject: From Miss Scolla

Sent: Thu, 18 Aug 2005 22:03:26 +0300

Dear Gilbert Murray,

How are you today with your family?

I am happy to receive your response and willingness to assist me in this transaction in this time of need.

Please I did not come to you by my own power; rather it is by God’s divine connection after my 7 days prayer and fasting for God to lead me to a good someone that will never undermine my age to sit on top of this money after assisting me retrieved it from the security company.

I am with you with all my hope and believe that what God have started in our relationship will be permanent by his grace in the name of Jesus I pray amen.

I will like you to forward your direct phone and fax numbers so that I will give you a call for more details about this transaction and also fax all the documents covering this money in the security company as a proof on what I am telling you. Please you are called by God and I will like you to keep this transaction very confidential for I know that through you this money will be invested as my wish and secure my dear life in your country, the land of my hope.

I am a young girl who trust in God and promise you that for you are called for this assistance you will never regret it, all I need from you is your quick response and seriousness to see that everything about this transaction will end up before one week.

As I receive your response regards to this mail I will immediately give you the contact informations of the security company where this money was deposited by my late mother so that you will contact them for more verifications and also apply for the retrieval of the trunk box that contains the money, under agreement with me as I will instruct you.

May God be with you and your family till I will join you in your country as one family as God has made it.

Yours daughter in the Lord,

Scolla


From: Scolla Sahili

To: Gilbert Murray

Subject: I AM WORRIED TO HEAR FROM YOU FROM SCOLLA

Sent: Sat, 20 Aug 2005 11:20:42 +0300

My Dear Gilbert,

How are you today? I hope you are fine.

I have been expecting to hear from you since I sent you my last mail. Up till now I have not heard from you.

I am worried to hear from you so that we can proceed in this transaction.

I am waiting to hear from you soonest.

Thanks and God bless you,

Scolla Sahili


From: Gilbert Murray

To: Scolla Sahili

Subject: I apologise for the delay in getting back to you

Sent: Mon, 22 Aug 2005 09:49:48

Dear Miss Sahili,

Thank you for your emails. I apologise for the delay in getting back to you regarding this business proposal you have put to me. I was going to give you a call on Friday, but apparently there was a power surge in our local telephone exchange in the early hours of Friday morning and our telephone service has been out of action ever since. This also meant that my internet connection has been unavailable too. I can only email you now thanks to a friend of mine – a local inventor – who has managed to rig me up an internet connection via my satellite dish.

If I may be perfectly honest with you, I am still a little sceptical about this business: it seems almost too good to be true. I would not like you to think that I was doubting your word, but I would like some proof that you really do have access to this amount of money before we proceed any further. You say you have some documentation that proves this. I would appreciate it if you could email me a copy by return.

I must go now and help our waiter, Manuel, clear up the breakfast things in the dining room. He’s only just joined us, and although he means well he does seem to need constant supervision. The fact that he’s Spanish – he’s from Barcelona – doesn’t exactly help matters.

Please get back to me as soon as you can with the documentation. I look forward to hearing from you.

Best regards,

Gilbert Murray


From: Scolla Sahili

To: Gilbert Murray

Subject: SEE THE CONTACT OF THE SECURITY COMPANY AND MY PHOTO FROM SCOLLA

Sent: Mon, 22 Aug 2005 20:18:03 +0200 (CEST)

My Dear Gilbert,

I received your mail and I thank you for sending me your message which I am expecting for some days now but you have given me your reason that there is a power failure in your area. I heard what you said, that you are not really sure about this transaction and you have not build more trust with me.

You should understand that this my transaction is 100% genuine which you know that I am a citizen of Sudan from Darfur region where the war was badly affected and I hope that you are listening to BBC/CNN to hear what is happening in my country Sudan. That is the reason why I am inviting you to visit me here in Abidjan, Cote D’Ivoire, West Africa, so that you will see things by yourself, because seeing is believing and for you to remove doubt from you mind in this transaction.

Concerning the documents which you told me to forward to you. I will do that as soon as I receive your personal photo and your telephone and fax number and I will like to hear from you on the telephone before forwarding you all the necessary documents regarding this transaction which you know that this fund is the only hope I have for my life. I will advise you to contact the security company where the trunk box of the fund was deposited for you to communicate with them and for them to know you as my foreign partner.

See the contact of the security finance company below:

Name: Viga Assistance Security Finance Company

Address: 250 Boulevard D’Cocoddy, Abidjan, Cote D’Ivoire, West Africa

Tel: +225 07440535

Fax: +225 21362099

Email: viga_assistancestoragehouse22@yahoo.fr

Contact person: Dr Kone Mohammed

You should introduce yourself to them very well as my foreign partner who wants to assist me to retrieve my consignment which was deposited under their custody for long and you should not let them know that the contains of the box is money because my late mother registered it as a family valuable items for security reason.

If you contact them, try to let me know as soon as possible.

I am forwarding you my personal photo for you to know my face and I will like to get your own photo too for me to know your face too.

You can call me on my private telephone number: +225 07890364.

I am waiting to hear from you soonest.

Thanks,

Scolla

Scolla Sahili
(Click to enlarge)


From: Gilbert Murray

To: Scolla Sahili

Subject: Did you actually read my last email?

Sent: Tue, 23 Aug 2005 09:36:09

Dear Miss Sahili,

My dear girl, did you actually read my last email? I told you that I was somewhat sceptical about this business, and asked you to email me copies of the documents you were talking about as proof. Yet all you have sent me is a picture of yourself. You’re a very pretty girl, but this doesn’t prove what you’ve been telling me. Only a scanned copy of the documents will do that.

And given that I have already explained to you about my telephone being out of action, how on earth do you expect me to ring you? I am a busy man and I simply don’t have time to go driving into town to find a working telephone. Until my telephone is back in action, I am afraid that communicating by email will have to do for now.

I must go now: breakfast is being served and I can’t trust that idiot Manuel for more than a moment on his own. He’s managed to spill coffee all over one of our guests already this morning. Get back to me with the documents immediately, and let’s have no more of this messing about.

Best regards,

Gilbert Murray


From: Scolla Sahili

To: Gilbert Murray

Subject: SEE ATTACHED DOCUMENTS FROM SCOLLA

Sent: Tue, 23 Aug 2005 12:35:54 +0200 (CEST)

Dear Gilbert Murray,

I received your mail and I heard what you said that I should send you all the necessary documents regarding this transaction. You should understand that it is not easy to send a person which have not build trust a documents that covers your fund. That is the reason why I want to build more trust and sincerity and have more information about you before sending you the documents. But you told me that your telephone number is not OK. If you restore it try to forward it to me so that I will call you and talk to you on the telephone or you can call me on my telephone number: +225 07890364.

I really know that you are ready to assist me in this transaction and I trusted you.

See the documents below: the certificate of the deposit and the contact bond which the security finance company issued to my late mother when she deposited the trunk box of the fund.

I will advise you to contact the security finance company which I gave you their contact address yesterday for you to communicate with them and for them to know you as my foreign partner.

I will like to get your own photo for me to know your face.

If you contact them try to let me know as soon as possible.

I am waiting to hear from you soonest.

Thanks and God bless you,

Scolla

The certificate of deposit
(Click to enlarge)

The contractual bond
(Click to enlarge)


From: Gilbert Murray

To: Scolla Sahili

Subject: Thank you for the documents

Sent: Tue, 23 Aug 2005 15:31:38

Dear Miss Sahili,

Thank you for sending me those documents at last. Very nice they are too. Now I’ve seen proof of your story, I’m more than happy to move forward with this affair.

You asked for a copy of my photograph. I’ve attached one to this email. Some photographer took it a couple of weeks ago. It’s supposed to be going into a new Lincolnshire tourism booklet next year, so he asked me to look as if I was welcoming some new guests to the hotel. I’m standing on the steps of Murray Towers, by the way: that’s my hotel, the one I’m hoping to expand and take upmarket with your help.

Now that we’ve agreed to do this bit of business together, I think we need to talk about my plans for expanding the hotel in more detail. You say you were hoping to invest in five-star hotels. Well would you be interested in sinking some of your money into the redevelopment of Murray Towers? I’ve been wanting to attract a better class of guest for some time now: most of the people we have coming to stay are nothing but riff-raff if you ask me. I’m talking about a true business partnership here, my dear girl. With your money and my plans, we could go far.

I can tell you one thing, Miss Sahili, if we’re going to turn Murray Towers into a five-star establishment, we’re going to have to get ourselves some better staff. That new Spanish waiter I was telling you about, Manuel, is bloody useless. He can barely speak English and he’s the clumsiest oaf I’ve ever come across in all my life. He served the wrong dishes to no less than three different tables at lunchtime. I ended up hitting him on the forehead with a spoon to try and knock some bloody sense into him. You just can’t get the staff nowadays.

Now then, this security company. You say I shouldn’t let on that the consignment they’re holding is stuffed full of money, is that right? Well what should I tell them is in it? We’d better get our story straight before I contact them: I don’t want to go and put my foot into it.

Let me know about that, and what you think of the idea of the two of us going into partnership. I think it could be a good move: we could make some money here, and fulfil my dream of turning Murray Towers into Lincolnshire’s premier hotel. What do you say?

Best regards,

Gilbert Murray

Gilbert’s photograph
(Click to enlarge)


From: Scolla Sahili

To: Gilbert Murray

Subject: TRY TO CONTACT THE SECURITY COMPANY FROM SCOLLA

Sent: Wed, 24 Aug 2005 11:54:25 +0200 (CEST)

My Dear Gilbert Murray,

Thanks for your mail and I thank you for sending me your personal photo and you looks very handsome and young. I love the photo.

I heard what you said that we are going to do business together with you in order to invest this fund in the hotel business. Your idea and suggestion is welcome for us to invest the fund in five-star hotels which will profit both of us. I know that you have been exposed in the hotel business for long and any instructions and advice you give me in order to invest this fund in the hotel I will take it because you know more than me in that area of investment of hotels.

We are going to do a partnership and I will agree on that. If this fund is transferred to your personal account we are going to sit down together and discuss about that.

I will advise you to contact the security finance company where the trunk box of the fund was deposited for you to communicate with them and for them to know you as my foreign partner who want to assist me to retrieve my consignment which my late mother deposited under their custody and you should not let them know that the contains of the trunk box is money for security of the fund because my late mother registered it as a family valuable items for security reason.

I want to know the exactly country you are from. Please you should not be annoyed for this my question.

If you contact the security company try to let me know as soon as possible and try to follow their instruction and advice in order to retrieve the trunk box of the fund from their custody.

I am waiting to hear from you soonest.

Thanks and God bless you,

Scolla Sahili


From: Gilbert Murray

To: Scolla Sahili

Subject: I will contact the security company as soon as I get a moment

Sent: Wed, 24 Aug 2005 14:47:52

Dear Miss Sahili,

Thank you for your email. So, you like the look of me, do you? Thank you for the compliments. I have been told that I was quite dashing in my day, and one does try to look after oneself, despite the passing of the years.

It’s just a shame that the wife doesn’t appreciate my dashing good looks in the way that you obviously do. She seems to spend all of her time chatting to her friends on the phone (when it’s working, that is), and it’s almost as if she doesn’t even know that I’m there a lot of the time. So it’s nice to hear from a young lady such as yourself who obviously appreciates the qualities of a more mature man.

Anyway, enough of this mutual admiration society. I’ve had a hell of a day so far. I’ve been trying to hang a moose head on the wall in the lobby all day, but I haven’t even managed to get that done, what with running around after all the guests and having to check up on Manuel all the time. And do I get any gratitude from anyone for all this? No, I do not. It makes me wonder why I bother sometimes, it really does.

So, you reckon that the way forward is for me to get in touch with this security company, do you? Fair enough. I’ll contact them as soon as I get a moment. And don’t worry; I won’t let on what’s in the box. Mum’s the word.

I’ll just see if I can get that moose head up on the wall first. One thing at a time, that’s the way. When that’s up there and out of the way I’ll get in touch with the security company.

Best regards,

Gilbert Murray

PS. I haven’t told the wife about our little bit of business. She’s an awfully jealous woman, and if she found out that I was carrying on with an attractive young woman such as yourself, she’d hit the roof. So on the whole, I think it’s best she doesn’t know.


From: Gilbert Murray

To: Dr Kone Mohammed; Cc: Scolla Sahili

Subject: Regarding a consignment that is currently in your care

Sent: Wed, 24 Aug 2005 15:53:49

Mohammed,

Good afternoon. I’m Gilbert Murray, the foreign business associate of a charming young lady called Miss Scolla Sahili. As you will no doubt be aware, Miss Sahili’s mother, Mrs Mariam Sahili, entrusted a trunk box into your care way back in January 2001.

Well, Mrs Sahili’s dead now (may she rest in peace). Hypertension, it was. Probably a result of having too much salt in her diet, the poor dear. It’s not uncommon. Anyway, with Mrs Sahili being no longer with us, her daughter and I would like to reclaim this trunk box.

I’d appreciate it if you could get back to me as soon as possible so that we can make arrangements for this trunk box to be delivered into my safekeeping.

Best regards,

Gilbert Murray


From: Dr Kone Mohammed

To: Gilbert Murray

Subject: FROM VIGA ASSISTANCE SECURITY COMPANY ABIDJAN

Sent: Thu, 25 Aug 2005 11:04:30 +0200 (CEST)

Attention to Mr Gilbert Murray.

Dear Sir,

We received your mail and we acknowledged you as a foreign partner of Miss Scolla Sahili which her late mother deposited a consignment for long in our head office here in Abidjan, Cote D’Ivoire, West Africa before she met her sudden death and Miss Scolla Sahili came to our office and informed us that her foreign partner want to assist her to retrieve the consignment in our office here and also her late mother paid some deposit amount of money for the dumorrage (sic) charge fee in advance.

There is some dumorrage charge fee to be balance before retrieving your consignment from our company here in Abidjan, Cote D’Ivoire, West Africa.

Please you are free to come down here to retrieve your consignment from our office but there is a political tension coming up in October 2005. That is the reason why we need all our clients to come and retrieve their consignments from our custody for security reason to avoid any loss of consignment.

If you cannot be able to come down here in Abidjan, Cote D’Ivoire, you can choose one of our collecting centres in Europe such as France, Spain, Greece, Holland, Turkey and Germany, or in Africa such as Egypt, Morocco and South Africa. You have to choose one of the listed countries where it will be easy for you to retrieve your consignment on behalf of your partner Miss Scolla Sahili.

  1. There will be a change of ownership on your name in the High Court of Cote D’Ivoire for you to be the beneficiary of the consignment.
  2. There will be an authorisation letter from the security finance company to be issued to you for the receiver of the consignment which your partner will sign and her lawyer will sign too for you to have the full power to retrieve your consignment from our office and which will cost you some amount of money to obtain it from the High Court of Cote D’Ivoire ($2,500 Euros).

Send the money through our secretary:

Name: Miss Ugomma Uchechi Kalu

Address: 250 Boulevard D’Cocody, Abidjan, Cote D’Ivoire, West Africa

Send it through Western Union or MoneyGram and remember to forward us the payment slip or control number.

We need to get your telephone and fax numbers and also a photocopy of your international passport or driving licences for documentation as the rightful beneficiary of this consignment and all these documents is very necessary to obtain from the High Court of Cote D’Ivoire and without these documents our office will not realise the consignment to you for security reason. Please try to assist your partner to retrieve her consignment out of this country for security reason.

We are waiting to hear from you soonest.

Thanks for your co-operation,

Dr Kone Mohammed


From: Gilbert Murray

To: Scolla Sahili

Subject: I’ve had an email from the security company

Sent: Thu, 25 Aug 2005 11:11:49

Dear Miss Sahili,

How are you today, my dear girl? I’ve had an email from that Mohammed fellow at the security company. I have to say, it doesn’t sound like the most secure “security company” to me: he told me that everyone’s got to get their consignments out of there by October because they’re expecting some “political tension”, whatever that means, and they’re expecting to lose some consignments! I ask you, does that sound “secure” to you? They sound like a bunch of cowboys if you ask me. It makes me wonder what on earth your mother was paying all that money to them for. The money probably would have been safer if she’d just stuffed it under her bed.

Anyway, for better or for worse, they’re the ones who are looking after your consignment at the moment and there’s nothing we can do about that. But I reckon the sooner we can get it out of their hands the better.

Mohammed was wittering on about something he called “dumorrage”. I haven’t got the faintest idea what he’s on about there. I looked up the word in the dictionary but it’s not in there. He’s also talking about paying for some letter to authorise me to collect the consignment. He told me it would cost – and I quote – “$2,500 Euros”. What the hell does that mean? I don’t know if he’s talking about dollars or euros there. Then he started blathering on about the High Court or something. If you ask me, I reckon Mohammed had been at the bottle before he wrote that email to me. I couldn’t make head nor tail of what he was on about.

Anyway, regardless of whether the man is talking about dollars or euros, that sounds like an outrageous amount of money to pay for a simple letter. I reckon all we need to enable me to collect the consignment on your behalf is a simple power of attorney. Tell you what, why don’t I have a word with my lawyer, Welsby, and see if he can draw one up for us?

Welsby’s a fine lawyer, and very well-respected in Lincolnshire legal circles. He also charges extremely reasonable fees. I’m sure he wouldn’t charge us more than about £100 to draw up a simple power of attorney.

Welsby’s got the sharpest legal brain I’ve ever come across. He proved invaluable the other year after an unfortunate incident involving a faulty electric blanket in one of our bedrooms and a locked fire exit. Welsby worked wonders in the ensuing court case. Not only did he manage to get all charges against me dropped, he also persuaded the judge to award me costs against the bereaved families.

I can’t recommend Welsby highly enough. Let me know if you’d like me to contact him, my dear girl. I am sure he would be able to help us out in this business.

Best regards,

Gilbert Murray


From: Scolla Sahili

To: Gilbert Murray

Subject: FROM SCOLLA

Sent: Thu, 25 Aug 2005 13:51:07 +0200 (CEST)

Dear Gilbert Murray,

I received your mail and I heard what you said that you have contacted the security finance company where the trunk box of the fund was deposited. I thank you for contacting them and also I heard what you said that you have heard from the director of the security finance company and they told you to send them some money.

After reading your mail I called the office of the security finance company and confirmed exactly the amount they needed and the director of the security finance company told me that they told you to send the sum of 2,500 Euros in order to make the change of ownership on your name in the High Court of Cote D’Ivoire for you to be the beneficiary of the trunk box of the fund and also to obtain a power of attorney from the High Court of Cote D’Ivoire that is called the letter of authorisation which they will obtain and I will forward it to you for you to present to any of their collecting centres in Europe for the retrieval of the trunk box of the fund on my behalf.

Concerning what the security finance told you about to retrieve the trunk box of the fund before October 2005, is due to the political tension crises which are arising here in Cote D’Ivoire. Of course the director of security finance company is right to inform you so that you will be aware and also to assist me urgently in order to retrieve the trunk box of the fund from their custody for security reason because he don’t want my consignment to be lost and you know that there is a political war here in Cote D’Ivoire where rebels is holding 60% of the country and government is only holding 40% and they wanted to organise a presidential election on October 2005. That is the reason why I contacted you to assist me to retrieve the trunk box of the fund before that time and the security company director told me that he have informed all the customers to come along to retrieve their consignment to avoid any lost of the consignment for security reason.

Concerning your attorney which you mentioned in your mail. You should understand that the trunk box of the fund was deposited in the security finance company here in Cote D’Ivoire not in the United Kingdom and all the necessary documents should be obtained here in Cote D’Ivoire High Court not in the United Kingdom High Court and the security finance company have their own famous attorney who will obtain all the documents needed from the High Court of Cote D’Ivoire. No need to be looking for another lawyer over there and I don’t want you to do much expenses in this transaction.

Please try to contact the director of security finance company and send them the money so that they can proceed to obtain all the necessary documents and after they have obtained it and given it to me then I will forward it to you for your record purpose.

Please you should remove fear in this transaction because this transaction is 100% genuine because the trunk box of the fund is in a safekeeping in the security finance company here. Is because of the political tension here that is why I am worried to see that this fund is transferred to your personal account in your country.

I am waiting to hear from you.

Thanks and God bless you,

Scolla


From: Gilbert Murray

To: Scolla Sahili

Subject: 2,500 Euros is an awful lot of money

Sent: Thu, 25 Aug 2005 14:43:03

Dear Miss Sahili,

So, it’s Euros that Mohammed’s after, is it, not dollars? Well, that’s one thing cleared up at least. But 2,500 Euros is an awful lot of money just to get a single document signed. If you ask me, this security company is trying it on, my dear girl. I’m sure a power of attorney would do the trick just as well. After all, surely all we’ve got to do is to prove to the security company that you have authorised me to act on your behalf? I don’t see what the High Court has got to do with anything.

Are you sure you don’t want me to get in touch with Welsby? I’m only trying to save us a bit of money here.

It’s going to be a busy day around here tomorrow: we’ve got the builders in. They’re going to block up one door that we don’t use and put in another door, through from the lobby to the kitchen. The wife’s away for a couple of days. Don’t let on to anyone, but I’m not using the builders she thinks I am. Stubbs is far too expensive, so I’ve got a chap called O’Reilly in to do the work. Granted, he’s not quite as methodical as Stubbs, but he’s a damn sight cheaper, and that’s the main thing if you ask me.

Anyway, let me know what you think about Welsby, there’s a good girl. If there’s any chance of us being able to sort this out without having to pay money hand over fist to those money-grabbing mendicants at the security comany, I think we should pursue it. I’ve got your best interests at heart, my dear. Never forget that.

Best regards,

Gilbert Murray


From: Scolla Sahili

To: Gilbert Murray

Subject: FROM SCOLLA SAHILI

Sent: Fri, 26 Aug 2005 11:16:13 +0200 (CEST)

Dear Gilbert Murray,

I received your mail and I heard what you said about the 2,500 Euros which the security finance company told you to send to them and you are telling me that is a big money to you in order to obtain one document.

Let me remind you that the documents which the security finance company are asking you to send money to them is not only one documents rather is to obtain all the necessary documents regarding this transaction and also to make the change of ownership on your name in the High Court of Cote D’Ivoire for you to be the full beneficiary of the trunk box of the fund. An authorisation letter which the security company attorney will obtain from the High Court too is not only one document as you mentioned on your mail.

You should understand that the trunk box of the fund was not deposited in the security company in the United Kingdom rather it was deposited here in Cote D’Ivoire and all the necessary documents should be obtained in this country, Cote D’Ivoire. That is the reason why you should not contact any other attorney from United Kingdom and as you mentioned your friend attorney Welsby.

Let us put head together and find solution to finalise this transaction. I will try my own possible best here to sell my late mother’s gold watch in order to raise some amount of money here and any amount of money I raised after selling the gold watch I will let you know and you have to try on your own side too to raise some amount in order to send it to the director of the security company, Dr Kone Mohammed, so that they can proceed immediately.

Try to let me know the discussion with you and the security finance company in order to deliver the trunk box of the fund to you in your country or to any of the affiliated offices in Europe where it will be easy for you to retrieve it.

Please extend my greetings to your family.

I am waiting to hear from you soonest.

Thanks and God bless you,

Scolla Sahili


From: Gilbert Murray

To: Scolla Sahili

Subject: Let me sort things out with the security company

Sent: Fri, 26 Aug 2005 10:53:11

Dear Miss Sahili,

Thank you for your email. Please don’t take this the wrong way, my dear girl, but I don’t think you quite understand what seems to be going on here. Being a young, trusting slip of a thing as you are, you are quite possibly unaware that not all people act as honestly as one would like them to do.

Take this security company, for example. They are demanding 2,500 Euros simply to obtain a single document. This is an outrageously high sum of money. Between you and I, I think they are inflating their fees and trying to take advantage of you because of your youth and inexperience. It’s shameful, if you ask me.

Now I don’t mind paying something to get this money released. But not 2,500 Euros. It’s the principle of the thing. I am simply not prepared to let this Mohammed chap fleece you and I out of our hard-earned money for no good reason.

But don’t you worry about a thing, Miss Sahili. You leave it to me. I’ll have a word with this Mohammed chap and see if I can sort things out with him. I’m sure that once he realises he’s dealing with a man of the world rather than with some callow, naive young bimbo (no offence), he’ll come to heel and we’ll be able to do business.

I’ll get right onto him and let you know the outcome of our discussions.

Incidentally, one of O’Reilly’s men popped in today and told me that they wouldn’t be able to start building work until tomorrow. This is a damn nuisance: the wife comes back tonight and then we’re going away for a long weekend. I’m having to leave Manuel in charge of the place, so God help me. I’ll just have to make sure I leave plain instructions with Manuel so that he can tell the builders what to do over the weekend.

Because I’ll be away with the wife this weekend, I won’t be able to get back to you from the end of today until Monday night or Tuesday morning. Bit of a shame, but it can’t be helped. The wife insists we go and visit her bloody sister for the weekend. Can’t say I’m looking forward to it. There’ll be nothing for me to do but sit around and get nagged at all weekend.

Anyway, I’ll get right onto this security company. If I hear back from them before the end of the day I’ll get back to you. If not, I’ll be in touch early next week.

Have yourself a pleasant weekend, my dear girl. Don’t do anything I wouldn’t do.

Best regards,

Gilbert Murray


From: Gilbert Murray

To: Dr Kone Mohammed; Cc: Scolla Sahili

Subject: Regarding Miss Scolla Sahili’s consignment

Sent: Fri, 25 Aug 2005 11:14:39

Mohammed,

Regarding the email you sent me yesterday, I have a number of questions. I would appreciate it if you could get back to me with some answers by return.

  1. You talked in your email about something he called “dumorrage” and said that there were fees to be paid. Firstly, what is “dumorrage”? I’ve looked it up in the Oxford English Dictionary and it doesn’t appear. Is this some local dialect word? Kindly explain exactly what you mean by this word, and specify the exact amount of the “dumorrage charge fee” you are talking about.
  2. You say there will need to be a change of ownership in the High Court to enable me to be the beneficiary of this consignment. Why? I am not asking you to change the name of the consignment’s beneficiary, for God’s sake. Miss Sahili is the rightful beneficiary, and she should remain so. After all, it is her money. As her foreign business partner, I am merely going to be collecting the money on her behalf. As Miss Sahili and I don’t want you to change the name of the beneficiary to me, we therefore can leave the High Court out of this, we can forget about this document, and consequently we can also forget about this charge (which, I might add, appears to be grossly inflated).
  3. Presumably, we can therefore also forget about the “authorisation letter” you were wittering on about, which you said had to be obtained from the High Court. Once again, why must the High Court have anything to do with this? We are conducting a simple business transaction here, so there’s no need to get the High Court involved.

I accept that you need some documentary evidence that Miss Sahili has authorised me to collect the consignment on her behalf. For this, a simple power of attorney should suffice. I can either get my own lawyer to draft one of these, or if you prefer, you can instruct your own lawyer to do so. I know from previous experience that my own lawyer would not charge more than approximately £100 for this service, so if you wish your own lawyer to draw up the document, I don’t expect to be charged any more than this.

To be frank, Mohammed, it appears to me that you have seriously inflated your charges in an effort to take advantage of a vulnerable young orphan girl who has recently lost her mother. You should be ashamed of yourself.

Miss Sahili can count herself lucky that she now has me, a man of the world, to look out for her interests.

I am quite prepared to pay a reasonable sum to have this consignment released to me, but 2,500 Euros is not a reasonable sum. Now we know where we both stand, let us sort this out like men. We both know that these documents which you say you need to obtain from the High Court are not actually required. All we need is a simple power of attorney, which gives me the power to act on Miss Sahili’s behalf. Get back to me with answers to my questions and let me know whether you want to me instruct my own lawyer to draw up a power of attorney, or whether you wish your lawyer to see to it.

Best regards,

Gilbert Murray

PS. I will be unavailable from the end of today until Tuesday morning as I am going away with the wife for a long weekend. Try your best to get back to me today; if you can’t, I expect to have heard from you when I return early next week.


From: Dr Kone Mohammed

To: Gilbert Murray

Subject: FROM VIGA ASSISTANCE SECURITY COMPANY ABIDJAN

Sent: Fri, 26 Aug 2005 14:11:20 +0200 (CEST)

Attention to Mr Gilbert Murray.

Dear Sir,

We received your mail and we heard what you said, that we should explain you the meaning of dumorrage charge fee? The meaning of the dumorrage charge fee. If you deposited any consignment in a government company and it had been stayed for a long period of time you deposited it, it will be accumulated a fee, that is called dumorrage charge fee. You should contact your partner Miss Scolla Sahili so that she will forward you the certificate of deposit and the contract bond which our company issued to her late mother when she deposited the consignment under our care and you will find out how much she have paid for the dumorrage charge fee in advance and how much fee the consignment is accumulating daily. That is what is called dumorrage charge fee.

Concerning about the changing of ownership on your name. We have heard what you said, that you don’t want us to make the change of ownership on your name as the rightful receiver of the consignment out of this country Cote D’Ivoire. You should understand that your partner Miss Scolla Sahili is not coming with you over there to our collecting centre in Europe to retrieve the consignment. You are the one representing her to retrieve the consignment from our collecting centre in Europe.

It is very necessary to make the change of ownership on your name as the receiver of the consignment on behalf of your partner Miss Scolla Sahili for security reason.

About the authorisation letter, it must be obtained from the High Court of Cote so that the transaction will be legalised to avoid any problem along the line and our representing attorney here will obtain it. Any lawyer cannot draft that authorisation letter. It must be obtained from the High Court of Cote D’Ivoire from our representing attorney here because our company have our rules and procedures of handing things. So there is no way you can draft a power of attorney with your lawyer in London regarding this transaction which you know that the consignment is deposited in our custody here in Cote D’Ivoire. Every necessary documents should be obtained from the High Court of Cote D’Ivoire.

I will advise you to contact your partner in order to sort things out with you so that we can proceed to obtain all the necessary documents.

You have not chosen any country from the listed countries where it will be easy for you to retrieve your consignment so that we can arrange for the shipment as soon as possible.

Thanks for your co-operation,

Dr Kone Mohammed


From: Gilbert Murray

To: Dr Kone Mohammed; Cc: Scolla Sahili

Subject: You have not answered my questions satisfactorily

Sent: Fri, 25 Aug 2005 14:46:12

Mohammed,

My heart leaped when I saw that you had replied to my email in such a timely manner. “Ah,” I thought to myself, “no doubt this email will answer all of my questions.”

However, my heart sank when I read the contents of the email. I asked you a number of clear questions, and you have failed to answer any of them satisfactorily.

Let us try again. I will pose my questions as simply and straightforwardly as possible so that there is no possibility of you misunderstanding them.

  1. I now understand what you mean when you refer to “dumorrage” – although after trawling through my dictionary I have discovered that the correct spelling of the word is “demurrage” – so no wonder I couldn’t find out what it meant. Being the director of a security company, surely you ought to know how to spell words like this? Anyway, I asked you precisely how much the “demurrage” (please note the correct spelling) fee would be. You have not provided me with an answer. Please do so by return.
  2. You still have not given me a satisfactory reason why the consignment needs to be signed over to me. According to my Penguin Guide to the Law (a present from Welsby, the lawyer I have used for many years), all that is required in order for me to collect this consignment on Miss Sahili’s behalf is a simple power of attorney, signed by her, which gives me powers to act on her behalf in matters such as this. This is apparently standard practice worldwide. Of course, being a director of a security company I would not expect you to know that, but your lawyer should be well aware of it. Ask your lawyer. No doubt he’ll put you right.

This means that there is ABSOLUTELY NO NEED for us to sign over the consignment into my name, or to involve the High Court... or any court, for that matter. Such a document as a power of attorney can simply be signed and stamped in your lawyer’s office. Therefore, as there is no need to involve the High Court, we have no need for this “letter of authorisation” you keep blathering on about. I repeat, all we need is a simple power of attorney document – for which I am willing to pay – and I will be able to collect the consignment on Miss Sahili’s behalf.

If you don’t mind me asking, are you new to this? You don’t seem to know a lot about the way things work in the world of international business, that’s for sure. No offence.

Kindly talk to your lawyer about this. I am sure that he will confirm everything that I have told you. Once we have sorted out these preliminaries, I will consider which country I would like to collect the consignment from.

Get back to me as soon as you can, there’s a good man. I’m a busy man and quite frankly I’ve got better things to do with my time than to spend it teaching the director of a security company how to do his bloody job.

Best regards,

Gilbert Murray


From: Gilbert Murray

To: Scolla Sahili

Subject: I’m sure we’ll get all this sorted out next week

Sent: Fri, 26 Aug 2005 16:33:30

Dear Miss Sahili,

I trust you have been keeping on top of my correspondence with that Mohammed chap at the security company. I’ve been copying you in on all the emails I’ve been sending him.

As you’ll no doubt have seen, the man still hasn’t come up with a plausible reason to explain why we need to sign over this consignment to my name, with all the fuss, bother and expense that would entail. I keep on telling him that all we need for me to collect this consignment on your behalf is a simple power of attorney, but the man seemingly won’t listen. If you ask me, all this talk of having to obtain documents from the High Court is a load of rubbish, specifically designed to cheat you and I out of our money. Either that or he’s been knocking back the gin in some local bar and he’s beyond the point at which he can understand reasoned argument.

Perhaps you could have a word with him, my dear girl? Tell him that the consignment can stay in your name, and that all he needs is to see a signed power of attorney that gives me the right to act on your behalf. And tell him to sober up and keep off the bottle too, while you’re at it.

I’ve tried my best to keep my cool with this chap Mohammed, but I don’t mind telling you that he’s trying my patience – and that’s something I don’t have a lot of. I don’t suffer fools gladly, do you see? By God, I thought Manuel was bad, but Mohammed makes my Spanish waiter seem like bloody Wittgenstein.

Thanks to the time we’ve wasted trying to make Mohammed see sense, I’m afraid to say that we’ve not made a lot of progress today. But never mind; chin up, my dear girl. I’m confident that we’ll be able to get all this sorted out when I get back from my weekend away on Tuesday.

I think I’ve got everything sorted out so that the place should run like clockwork in my absence. Manuel’s been given strict instructions on what to do – and, just as importantly, what not to do – so there shouldn’t be any problems. There aren’t too many guests in the hotel this weekend anyway, so the main thing will be the fact that he’s got the builders to contend with. I’m sure things will be alright.

Well, have yourself a good weekend my dear, and I’ll get back to you on Tuesday. Hopefully Mohammed will have sobered up by then.

Best regards,

Gilbert Murray


From: Dr Kone Mohammed

To: Gilbert Murray

Subject: FROM VIGA ASSISTANCE SECURITY COMPANY ABIDJAN

Sent: Sat, 27 Aug 2005 11:32:46 +0200 (CEST)

Attention to Mr Gilbert Murray.

Dear Sir,

We received your mail and we heard what you said that we should give you the total amount of the demurrage fee balance which you are going to pay in one of our collecting centres in Europe before retrieving your consignment on behalf of your partner Miss Scolla Sahili. You should understand that your partner’s late mother paid the sum of $62,000 up front and the demurrage fee per day is $50 and the consignment have been accumulated for a period of 4 years and 8 months.

The total demurrage charge fee of the consignment accumulated is $84,100 and your partner’s late mother paid the sum of $62,000. $22,100 is the remaining demurrage balanced fee.

The remaining balance of the demurrage charge fee to be paid in our collecting centre in Europe is $22,100. You are going to pay this balance before retrieving your consignment from our collecting centre in Europe.

Concerning about the documents which I told you yesterday which our representing attorney will obtain here. After reading your letter I consulted our attorney here for more advice regarding the documents which I told you yesterday and he told me that you are right to say that and he is going to draft a power of attorney for you to have the full power to retrieve the consignment from our collecting centre in Europe on behalf of your partner Miss Scolla Sahili.

I am sorry for that and our attorney advised us that there will be an authorisation letter from the High Court of Cote D’Ivoire which the court of Cote D’Ivoire will sign it so that the transaction will be legalised and without the authorisation letter our collecting centre in Europe will not realise the consignment to you for security reason. That is the reason why it is very important to obtain the authorisation letter here in Cote D’Ivoire, West Africa.

You should contact your partner Miss Scolla Sahili and sort things out with him (sic) so that you can send the money to us for obtaining the authorisation letter from the High Court of Cote D’Ivoire and for our representing attorney to draft the power of attorney documents as soon as possible.

We are waiting to hear from you soonest.

Thanks for your co-operation,

Dr Kone Mohammed


From: Scolla Sahili

To: Gilbert Murray

Subject: SEE MY SECOND PHOTO FROM SCOLLA

Sent: Mon, 29 Aug 2005 13:51:22 +0200 (CEST)

Dear Gilbert Murray,

I received your mail and an attachment letter which you sent to the security finance company. After going through it I decided to meet the director of the security finance company so that I will explain him what you have said on your mail and the director of security company have told me that he have responded to you and they have consulted their attorney and their attorney have given them advice that you are right to say that, that there will be no change of ownership on this and he is going to draft a power of attorney which he as an attorney will sign it and the security company will sign it too.

After drafting it he will send it to me so that I will forward it to you for you to have right to retrieve the trunk box of the fund from the collecting centre in Europe.

I thank God that they have corrected their mistake and the director of the security company told me that their attorney have informed them that they will obtain an authorisation letter from the High Court of Cote D’Ivoire so that their collecting centre in Europe will realise the trunk box of the fund to you and without this authorisation letter their collecting centre in Europe will not realise the trunk box of the fund to you for security reason. It is very necessary to obtain it here in Cote D’Ivoire and this is their rules and procedure doing thing in their office here for security reason.

I will advise you to contact them as soon as you return back from your trip on Tuesday so that you will send them the amount of money you have at hand and myself will be trying on my side here in order to raise some amount in order to support you so that we can finalise this transaction. But I want to know the exactly country you have chosen where the security finance company will deliver the trunk box of the fund to you where it will be easy for you to retrieve it on my behalf.

I am sending you my second photo.

I am waiting to hear from you soonest.

Thanks and God bless you,

Scolla

Another photograph of Scolla Sahili
(Click to enlarge)


From: Gilbert Murray

To: Scolla Sahili

Subject: All hell has broken loose over here

Sent: Tue, 30 Aug 2005 09:32:47

Dear Miss Sahili,

Thank you for your email and for sending me another lovely photograph of yourself. I must say, you are a pretty little thing.

All hell has broken loose over here. I got back from my weekend away to find that Spanish halfwit Manuel got things completely wrong with the builders. They’ve only gone and blocked up the wrong door! I’ve got O’Reilly coming round later to survey the damage. He’d better put things right straight away, or there’ll be hell to pay, I can tell you. I was a fool to think that Manuel could cope with handling a simple matter such as telling the builders what to do. The man can’t be trusted with anything.

Talking of fools, I heard back from Mohammed at the security company. Apparently he’s spoken to his lawyer and it turns out that I was right all along: we don’t need to sign over the ownership of the consignment into my name at all; all we need is a power of attorney. Just as I thought. To tell you the truth, I’m a bit surprised that I seem to be having to teach Mohammed how to do his own job, but I think he’s probably new to all this. He certainly doesn’t seem to have much of an idea of what’s what if you ask me. For example, he’s asked me to send him payment for getting this power of attorney drafted, but he hasn’t told me how much it will cost! Never mind, I’ll get back to him and sort it out.

Now then, Mohammed’s finally told me how much this demurrage charge is. Apparently there’s $22,100 left to pay when I collect the consignment.

I trust that your late mother was sensible enough to put aside sufficient money to cover the costs of picking up the consignment before she died... after all, only a complete lame brain would hand over their money to a security company without making sure that they had the means of collecting it at a later date. So, my dear girl, can I leave it to you to sort out this demurrage charge with Mohammed with the money that your mother presumably left behind for this purpose? Let me know.

I’ll get right onto Mohammed and find out how much it will cost to get this power of attorney drafted and signed. Let’s hope we can make some real progress this week.

Best regards,

Gilbert Murray


From: Gilbert Murray

To: Dr Kone Mohammed

Subject: How much will this power of attorney cost?

Sent: Tue, 30 Aug 2005 09:41:10

Mohammed,

I have just read the email you sent me over the weekend. Glad to see that your lawyer’s put you right about all that change of ownership nonsense. He sounds like a chap who knows how many beans make five. If only you’d had the sense to talk to him in the first place, we could have got things moving a lot quicker.

I am also glad to see that you’ve started using the correct spelling of the word “demurrage”. It makes things easier all round if we make sure we spell things correctly, don’t you think? Then we know what we’re talking about and there’s no room for confusion.

So, as I thought, all we need to move forward is a simple power of attorney. Good. Now then, you haven’t told me how much your lawyer is charging to draft this document. My own lawyer, Welsby, charges around £100 to draft a power of attorney, so I imagine that your own lawyer will charge about the same, give or take a few pounds here and there. Get back to me and let me know how much you need me to send you and I’ll get the money off to you straight away.

Best regards,

Gilbert Murray

PS. Don’t worry about that demurrage charge. I’m sorting that out with Miss Sahili as we speak.


From: Scolla Sahili

To: Gilbert Murray

Subject: FROM SCOLLA

Sent: Tue, 30 Aug 2005 12:04:59 +0200 (CEST)

My Dear Gilbert Murray,

I received your mail and I thank the almighty God that you have returned safely from your trip.

I heard what you said that your servant halfwit Manuel got things completely wrong with the builders. I am very sorry for that. And I heard that the security company director Dr Kone Mohammed have clarified you in the issue of the change of ownership. I thank God that their attorney have advised them in that issue of changing of ownership. You are right to say that there is nothing like changing of ownership. You said it earlier that what they have to do is to draft a power of attorney for you to have the power to retrieve the trunk box of the fund on their collecting centre in Europe on my behalf.

You are a careful man. That is the reason why I trusted you in this transaction because you are going to handle this my fund very well without any mistake. We are going to invest this fund in the hotel business you told me earlier.

Concerning about the cost of the necessary documents from the High Court of Cote D’Ivoire. I will advise you to send the money to the security finance company so that they can obtain the documents as soon as possible. Even if the money is not complete you can send them the one you have at hand and myself will be trying on my own side here in order to raise some amount in order to surport you to obtain all the neccessary documents regarding this transaction.

Concerning the demurrage charge fee which is $22,100 the remaining balance. I have cross-checked the certificate of deposit and found out that is the exactly amount of the demurrage charge fee remaining to be paid to the security company.

I will advise you not to be worried about that. As soon as you send money to the security company to obtain the necessary documents and arrange to deliver the trunk box of the fund to one of their collecting centres in Europe which you have chosen then I will forward you the secret code key of the trunk box for you to open the trunk box of the fund and put hand in the box and clear them their demurrage charge fee. I think this will be OK for you.

How is your family? I hope they are all fine. Please extend my greetings to them. Very soon I will rejoin them over there as one family.

I am waiting to hear soonest.

Scolla


From: Dr Kone Mohammed

To: Gilbert Murray

Subject: FROM VIGA ASSISTANCE SECURITY COMPANY ABIDJAN

Sent: Tue, 30 Aug 2005 12:34:17 +0200 (CEST)

Attention to Mr Gilbert Murray.

Dear Sir,

We received your mail and we hope that we have clarified you about the change of ownership which our representing attorney have advised us not to do so. That the only thing is to draft a power of attorney from his chamber and a letter from the High Court of Cote D’Ivoire that is called an authorisation letter for our collecting centre in Europe to realise the consignment to you and without the letter of authorisation our collecting centre in Europe will not realise the consignment to you for security reason.

This is our rules and procedure of doing things in our office to avoid any loss of consignment.

About the money to obtain the two needed documents. You mentioned that in London that your attorney Mr Welsby do take £100 to draft a power of attorney. You should understand that here is Cote D’Ivoire, West Africa. Our professional lawyers here have their own rules and procedure of doing things here and Cote D’Ivoire is different from London. That is the reason why they will not take that £100. If you can send the sum of £700 so that our representing attorney can get the document from the High Court and also to draft the power of attorney immediately.

You should send the money through our secretary:

Name: Miss Ugomma Uchechi Kalu

Address: 250 Boulevard D’Cocody, Abidjan, Cote D’Ivoire, West Africa

Send it through MoneyGram and remember to forward us the payment slip or the control number.

We are waiting to receive the money so that we can arrange for the shipment delivering to one of our collecting centres in Europe.

NB. You have to choose one of the listed countries in Europe where we have our collecting centres.

Thanks for your co-operation,

Dr Kone Mohammed


From: Gilbert Murray

To: Dr Kone Mohammed; Cc: Scolla Sahili

Subject: £700? For a power of attorney?

Sent: Tue, 30 Aug 2005 14:18:41

Mohammed,

£700? For a power of attorney? Are you sure about that? £700 is a hell of a lot of money to pay to get a lawyer to draft a simple power of attorney. Are you sure your lawyer didn’t mean £70? That would be a far more reasonable figure. £700 sounds like a ridiculously high amount to me.

Listen to me, Mohammed, I want a detailed breakdown of exactly how this figure of £700 has been arrived at, do you hear? No man with an ounce of common sense would pay a huge legal bill like that without knowing exactly how the figure had been arrived at. Get back to me a detailed breakdown at once, and if your lawyer can satisfy me that the amount is justified and that he’s not just lining his pockets at my expense, we are in business.

I expect to hear from you by return.

Best regards,

Gilbert Murray


From: Gilbert Murray

To: Scolla Sahili

Subject: We are making progress

Sent: Tue, 30 Aug 2005 14:24:11

Dear Miss Sahili,

No doubt you will have read the email I have just sent to that Mohammed chap at the security company. If you ask me, that lawyer of his is on the make. The cheek of it, charging £700 for drafting a simple power of attorney... work that in all probability won’t take him more than half an hour to complete. By God, if I earned that amount of money for half an hour’s work, I wouldn’t be sitting here running this crummy hotel, I can tell you that much.

Hopefully Mohammed will get back to me with a justification of the cost by return. I’m not sending him a single penny before he does, do you hear? I won’t stand for Mohammed and his lawyer cheating you and I out of a penny of our money, so don’t you worry.

Good news about the demurrage charge, by the way. Opening the box and taking the money out of it to pay the charge sounds like an excellent idea. Well done, my dear girl. Your mother would be proud of you.

O’Reilly came round late this morning, full of apologies, and promised to send his men round tomorrow to sort out the mess with the doors. As for that idiot Manuel, I gave him a good poke in the eye for being such a hopeless clot. That’ll teach him.

I’ll let you know when I hear back from Mohammed. We’re getting there, my dear, slowly but surely.

Best regards,

Gilbert Murray


From: Dr Kone Mohammed

To: Gilbert Murray

Subject: FROM VIGA ASSISTANCE SECURITY COMPANY ABIDJAN

Sent: Tue, 30 Aug 2005 20:10:18 +0200 (CEST)

Attention to Mr Gilbert Murray.

Dear Sir,

We received your mail and we heard what you said that the amount to draft a power of attorney and the authorisation letter from the High Court of Cote D’Ivoire is a big amount of money. You are asking us whether is £70. I think we have given you the exactly amount on our last mail to send us £700 so that it will enable our representing attorney to get the two documents from the High Court of Cote D’Ivoire.

We did not understand your mail again and the way you are addressing us in this transaction, we don’t like it. Is because of this young girl we reduced the amount from 2,500 Euros to £700, because your partner Miss Scolla Sahili came to our office and pleaded to us to reduce the amount and that is the reason why we reduced that amount.

If you can pick up your flight ticket and come down here in Abidjan, Cote D’Ivoire, that will be the best way so that you and our representing attorney can proceed to the High Court of Cote D’Ivoire in order to obtain the two documents so that you will see the thing by yourself.

If you are not ready to assist your partner Miss Scolla Sahili you simply let us know as soon as possible so that we can inform her that you are not capable to assist her to retrieve her consignment from our custody.

Thanks for your co-operation,

Dr Kone Mohammed


From: Gilbert Murray

To: Dr Kone Mohammed; Cc: Scolla Sahili

Subject: Enough of this petulance; let us get down to business

Sent: Wed, 31 Aug 2005 09:51:58

Mohammed,

I have just read the email you sent to me yesterday. Frankly, I found it insolent and rude. You say that you didn’t understand my email. Well buy yourself a bloody dictionary, man. Given your obviously limited grasp of the English language, I’ve tried my hardest in my dealings with you not to use any particularly long or difficult words. I can’t see what was so hard to understand about my last email.

And you say that you don’t like the way I am addressing you in this transaction. Well you’ll just have to get used to it, I’m afraid. I am a busy man with a small to medium-sized hotel to run, and I simply haven’t got the time to go around asking you how your wife is or enquiring after the health of your goat or what have you each time I send you an email. Businesslike and straight to the point, that’s me. If you don’t like it, well I’m sorry but that’s tough.

Now enough of this petulance, Mohammed. Let us get down to business. I am a man of action and frankly I am sick of all this faffing around.

For some reason, which I cannot for the life of me understand, you seem reluctant to send me a detailed breakdown of this £700 fee. Can you not understand that I simply want to know that this fee is justified, and that it is not just some arbitrary figure that you and your lawyer have plucked out of the air?

“Arbitrary”, by the way, means “based on or subject to individual discretion or preference or sometimes impulse or caprice”. There you go, now you won’t have to waste time looking that up in your dictionary. See how helpful I’m trying to be here?

Well, no matter. I am not willing to let this delay us any longer. £700 you say you want, so £700 you shall have. However, note that I will expect a detailed invoice from your lawyer at the end of all this so that I can see exactly where my money has gone.

I will get straight back to the fragrant Miss Sahili and discuss our next step. Await my next email.

Best regards,

Gilbert Murray


From: Gilbert Murray

To: Scolla Sahili

Subject: I have an idea

Sent: Wed, 31 Aug 2005 09:55:09

Dear Miss Sahili,

How are you today, my dear girl? Keeping well, I hope.

I’ve just had a rather rude email back from that Mohammed chap at the security company. He was whining on about how he doesn’t like the way I’ve been addressing him in this transaction. I am simply addressing the man with my usual hard-nosed, businesslike attitude. He’s overly sensitive, if you ask me. It’s probably a combination of the heat down there and the stress that must be brought on by having to look after so many peoples’ valuables.

Anyway, we’ve agreed that I need to pay him £700 to get everything sorted out. Mohammed’s asked me to send him the money by Western Union, but I’ve had a better idea. You told me yesterday that you knew the secret code key of the trunk box. Well why don’t you nip down to the security company, pop open the box and take the £700 out of there? That way you can give the money straight to Mohammed and things will move forward a lot quicker.

What do you reckon, my dear? Do you think you’ll be able to do this today? I wouldn’t be able to go to the Western Union office until tomorrow, you see – O’Reilly’s men are supposed to be turning up here today to sort out that mess with the doors – so if you could take the money out of the box that’d mean we could get all this sorted out even more quickly.

Let me know if you think you’ll be able to do this. I look forward to hearing from you.

Best regards,

Gilbert Murray


From: Scolla Sahili

To: Gilbert Murray

Subject: FROM SCOLLA

Sent: Wed, 31 Aug 2005 11:12:13 +0200 (CEST)

Dear Gilbert Murray,

I received your mail and I heard what you said that you have received an email from the security company director Dr Kone Mohammed and he said that he doesn’t like the way you are addressing them as the director of security company and you have agreed to send them the £700.

I heard what you said that I should go to the security finance company and open the trunk box of the fund and take away some amount of money in order to pay the security company for the money they requested for obtaining all the necessary documents. It is not possible for me to do that for security of the fund because my late mother warned me not to do so because she registered it as a family valuable items and she don’t want the security company to know that the contents of the trunk box is money for security reason. So I will not do that.

I will advise you to send the money to them immediately and you should make arrangement with the security company so that they can deliver the trunk box of the fund to one of their collecting centres in Europe then I will forward you the secret code key of the trunk box of the fund so that you will open the trunk box of the fund and put hand in the box and clear their demurrage charge fee.

If you send the money to the security company try to let me know so that I will go direct to the security company to meet Dr Kone Mohammed and their representing attorney so that he will include by drafting an agreement between me and you to avoid any betrayal in the future and all your percentage will be stated on it.

Please try to bring up your mind to assist me in this transaction so that we can invest this fund in your hotel business which we planned it earlier.

I am waiting to hear from you soonest.

Thanks and God bless you,

Scolla


From: Gilbert Murray

To: Scolla Sahili

Subject: Are you sure there is no way you can take the money out of the box?

Sent: Wed, 31 Aug 2005 10:52:11

Dear Miss Sahili,

Thank you for your email. Are you sure there is no way you can take the money out of the box? It would make things so much simpler if you could.

You say that you don’t want to take the money out of the box “for security reason”. We seem to have come across so many things that have been impossible in this transaction “for security reason”. It’s quite infuriating.

I have to say, I can’t really understand why you don’t want the security company to know that the box contains money. After all, it is a security company that we’re dealing with here... albeit just about the least secure security company I’ve ever come across in my life. The people there must be used to dealing with valuables like this on a daily basis. Surely you’re not afraid that they might steal the contents of the box if they found out what it was? I’m sure they wouldn’t do that. That Mohammed chap might not be the sharpest tool in the box, but I’m fairly sure he’s no crook. Strictly between you and I, I don’t think he’s bright enough to be a crook.

Are you sure there is no way you can do this, my dear? Do let me know.

Best regards,

Gilbert Murray


From: Scolla Sahili

To: Gilbert Murray

Subject: FROM SCOLLA

Sent: Wed, 31 Aug 2005 12:31:03 +0200 (CEST)

My Dear Gilbert Murray,

I received your mail and I read your mail very careful which I understood that you still want me to go to the security company and open the trunk box of the fund and pay them the money which they requested from you in order to obtain all the necessary documents.

I think I have explained this to you in a way you can understand it, that when my late mother was alive she told me that I should not let the security company know that the contents of the trunk box is money for security of the fund and I should not open the trunk box of the fund in the security company office and she told me that I should look for a trustworthy partner who will help me to retrieve the trunk box of the fund out of the security finance company office and transfer the fund to his personal account in overseas for safety of the fund.

If you give your beloved daughter or your son an instruction to do something serious like this, she will take it. That is how my late mother instructed me not to open the trunk box of the fund in the office of the security company for security reason and the security finance company cannot open the trunk box of the fund because my late mother registered it as a family valuable item and they kept it in their storage house for safe keeping and there is a contract bond which my late mother signed between her and the security finance company and I have already forwarded it to you earlier.

Let us put head together and finalise this transaction. No need to be debating in this particular issue. £700 which you know the huge amount of fund involved in this transaction is not something to be joking with, which you know that it will help us for jointly investment purpose in your country.

I have promised to forward you the secret code key of the trunk box of the fund after you have sent the money to the security finance company for obtaining all the necessary documents regarding this transaction.

I am waiting to hear from you soonest.

Thanks and God bless you,

Scolla Sahili


From: Gilbert Murray

To: Scolla Sahili

Subject: I will send the money to the security company

Sent: Wed, 31 Aug 2005 11:51:30

Dear Miss Sahili,

Thank you for your email. While I have to say that it strikes me as extremely odd that your mother would have squirrelled away all of her money in a security company without leaving you the means to retrieve it without the financial aid of a third party such as myself, if there is no other way for us to retrieve the money, then so be it.

You appear to be carrying out your late mother’s instructions to the letter, and for this you should be praised: you are obviously a gem of a daughter. I have no doubt that your mother would be proud of you, if she were not currently lying in a wooden crate six feet under and pushing up the daisies.

O’Reilly’s men have arrived and are currently working away at making good the mistakes they made this weekend, so I will not be able to transfer the money to Mohammed until tomorrow. I would send Manuel to transfer the money, but going by his past performance he’d probably end up transferring the money to Kuala Lumpur or somewhere like that. Oh well, I am sure that another day’s delay won’t matter too much.

I will contact Mohammed and tell him to expect the money tomorrow.

Best regards,

Gilbert Murray


From: Gilbert Murray

To: Dr Kone Mohammed; Cc: Scolla Sahili

Subject: I will transfer the money tomorrow

Sent: Wed, 31 Aug 2005 11:56:22

Mohammed,

Having consulted with my partner Miss Sahili, we have agreed that I will transfer the £700 to you tomorrow.

Could I please ask you to confirm the details of the person I am to send the money to? And could you also confirm which locations I will be able to collect the consignment from in Europe?

I look forward to hearing from you.

Best regards,

Gilbert Murray


From: Dr Kone Mohammed

To: Gilbert Murray

Subject: INFORMATION FROM VIGA ASSISTANCE SECURITY COMPANY ABIDJAN

Sent: Wed, 31 Aug 2005 18:50:08 +0200 (CEST)

Attention to Mr Gilbert Murray.

Dear Sir,

We received your mail and we heard what you said that we should forward you information details in order to send the money to us.

We are assuring you that as soon as we receive the money by tomorrow we will proceed to obtain all the two documents so that it will enable you to retrieve your consignment from our collecting centre in Europe.

This is the areas we have our collecting centre in Europe, such as Spain, Amsterdam, Germany and Switzerland. You have to choose one country from the listed countries so that we can arrange the shipment this weekend to deliver your consignment.

You can send the money through our secretary:

Name: Miss Ugomma Uchechi Kalu

Address: 250 Boulevard D’Cocody, Abidjan, Cote D’Ivoire, West Africa

Send it through MoneyGram or Western Union and remember to forward us the payment slip or the control number.

Thanks for your co-operation,

Dr Kone Mohammed


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