The Perfect Mark: Here’s a gut-wrenching story in brutal detail about how a seemingly intelligent man got caught up in a Nigerian 419 email scam. The Nigerians were mercilessly brazen — sucking more and more money out of this guy right up until the end, and beyond. And he fell for everything.
What’s interesting is that it’s not just the mark’s money they take. They con the mark into passing counterfeit checks. This is what gets their conifdence up — they get a $400,000 check from Nigeria, are allowed to deposit it, then wire the money somewhere else. That must really get them believing that the Nigerians are legit.
When Worley got off the phone with [the bank investigator], he was enraged.
“I hate being taken advantage of by you evil bastards,” he wrote to Nduka. “This is all lies?” He went on, “Your day will come that you will be judged by God, and so will I. And I am ashamed, and shamed, and an embarrassment to my family, who are so precious and Godly people. What a terrible model of a Christian that I am. Thoughts of suicide are filling my mind, and I am full of rage at you despicable people. I hate living right now, and I want to die. My whole life is falling apart, my family, my ministry, my reputation and all that I have worked for all my life. Dear God, help me. I am so frightened.”
In May, 2005, Worley went on trial in U.S. District Court in Boston on charges of bank fraud, money laundering, and possession of counterfeit checks.
Worley’s overseas correspondents, whose real identities he never knew, disappeared, and were never located or charged. With them went more than forty thousand dollars of Worley’s money and nearly six hundred thousand dollars from the checks. […]
Very, very sad. Via MetaFilter.