The Spanish Prisoner

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  • I opened my email this morning to find a message from Captain James T. Kirk.

    Dear Friend,

    Thanks for your mail and for accepting my offer. I apologize for my late reply; it’s due to my duty here. Since your last email to me on the month of August, I couldn’t reply back because my troops were camping at the road to the Turkmenistan border, Afghanistan that makes it difficult for me to check my mail.

    I have finally secured the money as being agreed and have every proof of this transaction only what I need is your assistance to transfer the fund to your personal Bank Account. I am ready now to transfer the money to your Bank Account. All I need is your correct Bank Account Details to enable me start transferring the funds immediately and Your Personal Contact Telephone Number for easy communication as I cannot leave Afghanistan because of the nature of my work.

    I will transfer the Money with the Brak Afghanistan Bank . They do International Transfer. I will not transfer the $10,500,000.00 at once to your Bank Account, I will be transferring the fund Bit by Bit $500,000 each transfer for security reasons. I will inform you on what to do when i finally transferred the money into your Bank Account.

    Please do not disclose this deal to anybody as to protect my duty. I attached my picture and picture of the Money for your confirmation and documentation.

    Remember, your share still remains the same 20% out of the total amount of the money. The total amount of the money is $10,500,000.00 {Ten Million Five Hundred Thousand US Dollars}.

    I will be waiting to hear from you as soon as possible to enable me proceed on the transfer. Please, Do not reply to this email, reply me to my private email address {capt.jamesk@REDACTED} for security reasons.

    Best Regard,

    Capt. James T. Kirk
    US Army Peacekeeping
    Counter Insurgency Training Center Afghanistan
    Camp Julien, Kabul


    So, Captain Kirk traveled back in time to give Unwinnable millions of dollars. I can live with this timeline.

    There are a couple of things I would like to point out, though. This is a version of a 419 email scam, which originated in Nigeria and takes its name from that country’s legal code for fraud. The 419, in turn, is a variant of the venerable con called the Spanish Prisoner. Essentially, the con plays on the mark’s greed, promising a huge payoff in cash, title and sometimes women, for a little up-front investment. A little become a little more, and a little more still, until the mark is bled dry or tumbles to the con. You know what they say, if something sounds too good to be true…

    As 419 scams go, this one is pretty well written, aside of the fact that he seems to think we’ve already spoken (we haven’t). There are so many things to love, from the use of Captain Kirk to the seemingly random capitalization to the…wait a minute. Brak is an Afghani banker?

    Comedy, TV