Ever wonder who would fall from those Nigerian scam artists that ask to give you millions of dollars? Well, now we know. It is Janella Spears among others. Of course, few other people would give $400,000 to the scam, but sitting in Sweet Home, Oregon, Spears thought this was a good investment. Of course, given my current stock market fortunes, it may not be crazier than giving it to a broker.
Spears is a registered nurse and a reverend who has married many couples. She received the standard pitch: a relative or desperate government official in a war-torn country needs to shuffle some funds around and, if you would help, you could keep 20 or 30 percent of millions of dollars. All they want is some money for fees and logistics. In her case it was $20 million left behind by her grandfather (J.B. Spears), with whom the family had lost contact over the years.
They even said President Bush and FBI Director “Robert Muller” (their spelling) were in on the deal and needed her help. She still did not see any problem when the documents and certificates came from the Bank of Nigeria. Spears drained her husband’s retirement fund and took out a lien on the family car. For years, she sent thousands of dollars.
She insists, however, that she is not a sucker.
What I do not understand is how these scammers can send out millions of contact emails and arrange for the transfer of funds. Yet, the government cannot set up traps. They seem to have no trouble doing so with pornography users. Clearly, this involves foreign actors, but pressure should be easily placed on the Nigerian government to allow sting operations and extradition of felons.
For the story, click here.