In that con, businessmen were contacted by an individual allegedly trying to smuggle someone connected to a wealthy family out of a prison in Spain.

In exchange for assistance, the scammer promised to share money with the victim in exchange for a small amount of money to bribe prison guards.

Yet other variants have involved mention of a Nigerian prince or other member of a royal family seeking to transfer large sums of money out of the country—thus, these scams are sometimes called "Nigerian Prince emails".

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In exchange for transferring the funds out of Nigeria, the recipient would keep 30% of the total.

To get the process started, the scammer asked for a few sheets of the company’s letterhead, bank account numbers, and other personal information.

Some scammers have accomplices in the United States and abroad that move in to finish the deal once the initial contact has been made.

purportedly sent to a selected recipient but actually sent to many, making an offer that would allegedly result in a large payoff for the victim.

More recently, scammers have also used fake but plausible-seeming accounts on social networks to make contact with potential victims.

The email's subject line often says something like "From the desk of barrister [Name]", "Your assistance is needed", and so on.

Deceptive car advertising will not be not tolerated, period.

That is the strong message the Washington state Attorney General’s Office sent to car dealers Sound Ford of Renton and Evergreen Ford of Issaquah.

The scam has been used with fax and traditional mail, and is now prevalent in online communications like emails.