From a Kindly Contributor in Poland who was trying to sell a property:

I am forwarding to you the very dodgy e-mails I have received.
I try to sell the property in Poland and posted some adverts in the Internet.
As response I got the first e-mail in Polish asking general questions if I speak English and about the price of property.
Then I received these odd two emails as below.

For more on how '419' advance fraud scams are usually tailored to the housing market, see:

Capsule version of a typical rental or real estate sales 'format':
- scammer demands deposit or escrow fee or something like this
- you send money order - that's the scam
- variation: scammer says 'You don't have to send the money order to me, send it to a friend of yours, just tell me the money order details'
- scammer shows up at Western Union before your friend, collects money order using details you provided

"Michael Rowells"

Scammer expresses interest, in Polish, but asks to switch to English

January 8, 2012


Czy mówisz po angielsku?
Jestem zainteresowany kupnem nieruchomo.ci,
Powiedz mi si. ostatni. cen. sprzeda.y.

*Link do oferty http://www.bezposrednio-nieruchomosci.pl/details-omitted Mieszkanie sprzeda. - location xxxxx* *Cena xxx,000 z. (xxxxx z. za m2) * x pokoje


Do you speak English?
I am interested in buying ...
Tell me ... prices. etc.

* Link to the offer www.bezposrednio-nieruchomosci.pl/details-omitted Houses for sale. - Location xxxxx * * Price xxx z (z xxxxx per m2) * x rooms

Kindly Contributor

Good Morning Michael,

Yes, I speak English.
I am not sure if I understood you properly - the price for the property is 547 000 pln but in the advert we have also included the agency provision so it's why was 566 000 pln. However it is negotiable - I am not sure exactly how much the agency will charge for their services.
... for the sale process we have signed the contract with the properties agency.
I am not sure if our agent speaks English - if you wish I can check it for you but I am sure they provide services for foreigners.

If you would like to see the advert in English there are details below:

The offer number is: xxxxxxxxx
The agency web: http://www.xxxxxxxxxxx.xxx
The web is also in English ( you can change the language by clicking icon in the right up corner)
The link to the English version of the advert is:


Please don't hesitate to contact me if you have any further questions. If you wish we can call you back or find you on Skype.

Kind Regards

"Michael Rowells"

Suddenly the story becomes more dramatic!

Subject: I WILL BUY IT


I have received your response concerning your advert and i hope you will understand my Mail reading in English, I will surely buy your property the one you advertised on the website for sale. I am contacting you based on trust and confidentiality that you will keep this as top secret. Don't be scared or surprise. Before beginning let me introduce my self to you I am Lt. Col Michael Rowells commander of 401st Army Field Support Brigade currently in Afghanistan. I contacted you in confidence hoping that you can be a trustworthy person and would also be helpful in a matter like this.

I am the commander in charge of 401st Army Field Support Brigade on war against terrorism, Based on the United States legislative and executive decision for withdrawing troops from Afghanistan come this year, I have no option than to retire from military service, Our mission is to help beef up terrorist targeted states, mostly the United states and the European Union (NATO)on war against terrorism.

During my stay here in Afghanistan, I was able to make the sum of $4.7million USD. Part of this money came from our raid on Taliban's. Secondly, I am a uniformed person and I can not be parading such an amount so I need to present someone as the beneficiary. I am an American and an intelligence officer, I have 100% authentic means of transferring the money through diplomatic courier service .I just need your acceptance and all is done. The only way to be safe with this money is to invest it, So i need someone i could deal with, If you accept i will transfer the money to you where you will be the beneficiary as soon as the next red cross flight goes to Europe.

I decided to find someone that is real and not imaginary and that is why i went to the website where i can be sure that the person is real. Where we are now we can only communicate through our military communication facilities which is secured so nobody can monitor our emails. If you are interested please send me your personal mobile number so i can call you for further inquiries when i am out of our military network.

You can also send me a confirmation email so that we can move forward with this deal and discuss the percentage that you will be entitled to out of the amount.



This is now a classic IRAQ AND A HARD PLACE 'format', borrowing from the plot of the film Three Kings. The tale of the soldier who needs your help to move Saddam's bullion is another take on the old Lettre de Jéresalem from the 1830s.

Here's the thing. Lt. Col. Rowells is a real person, whose name the scammer must have plucked off a web site.
Lt. Col. Rowells did NOT write or send the above email, and if you have any doubt about that, then run (do not walk) back to the main page of this web site and read everything on it out loud to yourself in a harsh tone of voice.
Scammers pretend to be individual American and British soldiers.
They pretend to be Nigerian senators and governors.
They pretend to be victims of accidents or storms or explosions (names plucked from the news).
They pretend to be the Sultan of Brunei.
They are none of the above!

Kindly Contributor

... knows this is a scam, but replies politely

Hello Michael,

Thank you for your e-mail.
As I have written before, if you would like to finalise the purchase of my flat please call to my lawyer from properties agency.
I have checked for you - the English speaking person you can call is xxxxxxxx +48 xxx xxx xxx. She will deal with you and will prepare all the paperwork and legal check.
When you will be calling her please use the offer number xxxxxx.
I am looking forward to hearing from you.

"Michael Rowells"

Tries a bit of psychological pressure - time is short, etc., and this is a secret!

January 10

Dear {Kindly Contributor},

Thanks for your mail, i truly need someone(SINCERE FELLOW) to partner with me in this. I wish to advise you that we don't have much time to get this deal done.
You have to know that I have so much exclusive duties here to handle and I need to move this fund out of this country as soon as possible so that I can concentrate on my duty post. I will prepare all the necessary documents for approval that the money is yours with a diplomat who is a friend but will not know that you are not the actual owner of the said funds because he is a man of decent mind.
I am going to control a complete shipment by a Red Cross jet so that the box will come to you through air and you will have no problem for the clearance because the Red Cross relief jet flies to Europe from Afghanistan to go collect relief from donors in Europe. I have two of my men as security to the airplane also.

As soon as i am through with the diplomat's arrangement here, i will get from him the contact of the diplomat that will deliver the consignment to you and forward his contact and phone number to you so you can have an appointment with him to know when you can come claim the consignment. As soon as the Red Cross jet departs, I will send you a copy of the Air way bill receipt which you shall forward to him. I do not know if you know how dangerous it will be for us to trust anybody with this secret. Nobody should know the secret of our wealth. This should be our top secret; nobody should know how we made our money. This is to keep our future investment safe out of trait from any body who may know this secret.
This is why I have taking my time to contact you for this deal. I picked your site honestly out of blind trust through my research for an unknown partner.

There is no time for delay i have the consignment ready for deposit and the consignment shall be forwarded to their London regional office to be combined with the Red Cross jet. I will stamp the consignment with an official United States stamp so there is no way any security agent or custom will ever open the box for any inspection because of the diplomatic and military authorization Tags placed on the box.

I can not be directly involved in the control in London because all i can do here is to send the consignment to you because we can not handle this money or spend it here because the global world is watching on us. Furnish me with the information below, as I did tell the Red Cross officer that we shall be intimating him with the information of the rightful owner of the boxes. This is all i require from you now:

1. Your Full name..............................................
2. Your country of origin......................................
3. Your current Residential address............................
4. Your direct telephone number................................
5. Your occupation.............................................

Once i receive this i will prepare every document making you the rightful owner of the consignment immediately and will contact you as soon as i conclude arrangement with the diplomat here. This i know may have to take me nothing more than 3days. In fact, as soon as the next Red cross jet is living Afghanistan to Europe. I await your immediate reply.


Kindly Contributor

[... did not reply! Fortunately she recognized this for what it is, and was kind enough to share it with us.]