Mumba Tama

Here is the dialogue I had with Mumba Tama, a Ghanan scam artist. Naturally, I used a pseudonym and a Hotmail address. I have not adjusted spelling or punctuation. I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it.

From: mumba tama

Sent: August 5, 2004 14:45
Subject: HELP......

from the bujumbor refugge camp
accra ghana, west africa.......

dear,sir/madam

Please permit me to introduce myself to you through this medium. I know you don't know me before and maybe surprise to read from me today, I got your contact in my searching of a good reputation foriegn partner to assit me in my late father fund, when I was making a research on how me and my two brothers, can travel to overseas and Invest on the petroleum business. I am very glad to have this opportunity to contact you and I want to count on you for reliability and trustworthiness and I also want you to handle this Issue I am about to disclose to you as confidential, because of my personality in my country.

I am Mumba the son of Chief Tama Koroma from Diamond Creek, Lofa County, Liberia. My father was until his death, the Paramount Chief of Lofa County also an Independent Diamond Mineral & Merchant. He died in March 13, 1999 after a brief illness at the age of 70.One day after my father's death, I was going through his under ground save when I saw some very Important Documents which reveals to me that my Late father has deposited one trunk of consignment box of $20 Million U.S dollars with a Security company here in ghana My two brothers, PETER and MOSES and myself have not traveled out side West Africa before.

his is the main problem we have.At this moment, we are now in Accra-Ghana where we flee to in the wake of recent fighting between the government, the LURD & MODEL, Rebel groups. We are presently taking refuge at the Buduburam Refugee Camp here in Ghana under the Auspices of the United Nations High Commission for Refugees, U.N.H.C.R.I want you to assist us in retrieving the funds to your country then make aragements for me and my two brothers, to Join you there, where you will also help us buy a House and Invest the rest of the money on any profitable business for us.My two brothers, and myself are willing to set-aside 5% of the Total money to cover any expenses you make. We also offer to give you 15% of the Total amount for your service.I will give you further details of the Security company in ghana also the Documents covering the funds as soon as I get an indication of your interest to help us,please do send me your phone number and your fax number on your reply.

Thank you very much,
Mumba Tama Koroma......
you can alaso reach me on my private email,
xxx@yahoo.com

From: Jimmy Siever

Sent: 10-Aug-04 16:18
To: mumba tama
Subject: RE: HELP......

Dear Mumba Tama Koroma,

I wish to extend my heartfelt gratitude to you for your decision to include me in this endeavour. I would be willing to help you and your brothers.

Let me know what I need to do next.

I am currently at sea, so do not have access to a fax machine or phone.

Jimmy Siever
Second Lieutenant
RCAF

[RCAF stands for Royal Canadian Air Force.]

From: mumba tama

Sent: August 20, 2004 19:41
To: Jimmy Siever
Subject: sorry for the late reply

Hello Jimmy Siever

thanks for your mail and may God bless your in Jesus Name (Name)

am very sorry for the late reply it just that i was in the hospital with my mum am very sorry for that okey.

frist i will like you to give me your full commiment in this transaction and we have to look for lawyer that can stand for you so that everthing will move fast and okey.

and i will like you to understand that this money is still in the security company and i dont have the power to see this money that is the reason why i need your help to claim this money for me and invest it for us.so i have to fax you the ducoment that was issu to my late father in the date of deposit and i have to call you so that i can hear your voice.

hope to hear from you.
mumba tama koroma

From: Jimmy Siever

Sent: 23-Aug-04 14:15
To: 'mumba tama'
Subject: RE: sorry for the late reply

My Dearest Mumba,

It was a pleasant experience to roll out of my bunk today and find out the Royal Canadian air Force had forwarded your email to me. I have been waiting very excitedly for your reply.

I was grief stricken to hear that your mum is in the hospital. I hope she is well.

I am most anxious to proceed with this exciting transaction. I am fully committed to doing everything I can to making this endeavour successful.

Am I to understand correctly that you will be finding me a lawyer to represent me? If so, please do find one that is familiar with the financial operations of the Royal Canadian air Force. My experience with lawyers in the past has not been at all optimal.

As I mentioned in my previous letter, I am stationed at sea and do not have access to a phone or a fax machine. My only means of communication while at sea is via radio communication or via the RCAF email system. My superiors have informed me that we will be arriving in Madagascar in a week or two. Perhaps I may be able to find a public fax machine there. However, using a public fax machine does concern me; they always charge exorbitant fees, particularly to us Canadian sailors. Would it be possible to be advanced a small token of the money in order to afford the fax machine?

I am so excited about this transaction and canít wait to meet you in person. You sound like a very honest man.

Jimmy Siever
Second Lieutenant
RCAF

From: mumba tama

Sent: 26-Aug-04 01:15
To: Jimmy Siever
Subject: HOPE TO HEAR FROM YOU SOONEXT

Hello Jimmy Siever

Thanks For Your mail to me am really happy to hear from you again.so how are you and your family i hope that all is well.

i have read your mail and i have understand all you are saying about the lawyer that is not the problem tomorrow i have to go and look for my late late father lawyer that is in ghana hear and tell him everthing about you.

plz can i ask your something?can you come to ghana so that you can do everthing yourself or i sound send all the things that back this transaction,plz is just a quation okey because now i have to put all my trust in you that you are going to help and my family,and plz remember that this is pravit betweet me and you.

get back to me so that i can give you the contact of lawyer.

bye

From: Jimmy Siever

Sent: 27-Aug-04 15:54
To: 'mumba tama'
Subject: RE: Thanks!

Good morning, Mumba Tumba,

I talked to my commanding officer and we will be travelling to Ghana after we leave Madagascar next week. I hope it is not too urgent that we meet. I have no control over how quickly we travel and it is somewhat depressing that I will have to wait so long to get the money.

In which city in Ghana where will we meet? We will be staying in Ghana for a week after we arrive, so I may be able to meet you and perhaps we can for drinks too.

Jimmy Siever
Second Lieutenant
RCAF

From: mumba tama

Sent: Friday, August 27, 2004 9:20 PM
To: Jimmy Siever
Subject: hope to see you

Hello,Jimmy Siever

thanks for your mail,how are you doing hope that all is well.

all i need from you now is your picture so that i can see you.

and i will like you to tell me why are you now.so that i can go the company and tell them that the sound begin to do everthing.because i really the way you are going to come to ghana.

and i will like you to be checking your box everyday.

bye

mumba tama koroma

From: Jimmy Siever

Sent: 30-Aug-04 08:47
To: 'mumba tama'
Subject: RE: hope to see you

Hi again Mumba,

Sorry it has taken so long. A lot of the other sailors here always want to hog the computer. I will try to reply more frequently.

As per the email you sent on Saturday, I am 22 years old. The military wonít let me grow a beard so I look like I am nineteen. Here is a picture of me.

[URL removed. It was a picture of three American soldiers standing side by side.]

I am the second from the right.

We arrived in Madagascar yesterday afternoon. We are currently docked at Toliara. We should be leaving later this week.

Jimmy Siever
Second Lieutenant
RCAF

From: mumba tama

Sent: 30-Aug-04 19:14
To: Jimmy Siever
Subject: RE: hope to see you

am really have to recieve your picture so how are you doing hope that all is well.if you have any line in there send it to me so that i can call you and hear your vioce,i just see your face and i was so happy about that.

there is some demorrage that we are going to pay to the company befor this money box can live.if you what to see the money box am going to send it to you it was issue to my mum by my dadd befor his death all the lagel thing are with us.

hope to hear from soon.

bye

mumba and family

From: Jimmy Siever

Sent: 2-Sep-04 12:56
To: 'mumba tama'
Subject: RE: hope to see you

Hello again, Mumba.

We are leaving Madagascar in about an hour. I thought I would write and say we will be stopping in Ghana next.

Will see you in a week or two.

Jimmy Siever
Second Lieutenant
RCAF

From: mumba tama

Sent: 2-Sep-04 17:58
To: Jimmy Siever
Subject: thanks for your affort

Hello,Jimmy Siever

thanks for your mail again.

onething that i will like you to understand is that i what transaction to be pravit have you tell your command about this transaction i will like you know?

am really happy about your affort that you are coming to ghana,plz i will like you to get back to me as you recieve this mail.

bye
mumba and family.

From: Jimmy Siever

Sent: 3-Sep-04 08:27
To: 'mumba tama'
Subject: RE: thanks for your affort

Hi Mumba,

To my knowledge, no one else knows of our conversations.

I hope your family is well.

I am excited about finally being able to meet you. See you in a week or two.

Jimmy Siever
Second Lieutenant
RCAF

From: mumba tama

Sent: Friday, September 03, 2004 8:02 PM
To: Jimmy Siever
Subject: RE: thanks for your affort

Hello,Jimmy Siever

thanks your mail so how are you doing today my family we are all ok.

now i have put all my trust in you.and i will like to tell you now that i dont ever go back to tha reffuge camp again just because of you.i just pray that may God help us in everthing that we are doing.

plz dont forget to send me mail back because wen ever i read your mail it make me happy that God have give me someone that is ready to help me out and my family.

and plz i will like you to tell me much aboutv your family.

bye mumba and family

From: Jimmy Siever

Sent: 7-Sep-04 08:48
To: 'mumba tama'
Subject: RE: thanks for your affort

Hi Mumba,

I hope all is well with you and your family. I just wanted to let you know that we just left port at Walvis Bay, Namibia. We stopped there last night and left this morning. We had to drop off some humanitarian supplies.

We should be in Accra at the end of the week or the beginning of next week. We will be staying for three days.

I am so excited to finally meet you and to see the money.

Jimmy Siever
Second Lieutenant
RCAF

From: mumba tama

Sent: 9-Sep-04 00:58
To: Jimmy Siever
Subject: waiting for you

Hello Jimmy Siever

i promis to send you a phone number so that you can call me as soon as you arrive accra,but befor you call me send me email frist,this is the phone number.

0244 xxx xxx.

hope to hear from you soon thanks

bye
mumba

[Now, here is where things start to pick up.]

From: Jimmy Siever

Sent: 10-Sep-04 08:53
To: 'mumba tama'
Subject: RE: waiting for you

Hi Mumba,

It was great to hear from you again.

We just left Douala, Cameroon this morning. We were dropping off some technological and medical supplies there.

We stayed awhile and I found a phone, but when I tried the phone number you gave me, a woman answered. She said she didn't know anyone by the name of Mumba. Did you give me the wrong phone number by mistake? I hope that you aren't trying to fool me.

Jimmy Siever
Second Lieutenant
RCAF

From: mumba tama

Sent: 10-Sep-04 15:45
To: Jimmy Siever
Subject: hope to see you

HELLO,Jimmy Siever

sorry i did not add the ghana code number which is 00233 that is the mistake that i make because i was thinking if you come to ghana befor you will call me,i am not try to fool you am really sorry about that plz forgive me.

so if you what to call me from any country you can me on 00233 244 xxx xxx but if you arrive ghana you dont have to add the code number you can 0244 xxx xxx you will hear my voice thanks.

bye mumba

From: Jimmy Siever

Sent: 13-Sep-04 14:38
To: 'mumba tama'
Subject: RE: hope to see you

Hi Mumba,

I am glad you are not trying to fool me. I had someone from Nigeria tell me last year that eh had some money for me. He said it was over 11 million dollars. It ended up being a scam. I was very upset. He even tried to kidnap me and kill me, but my military training allowed me to thwart his efforts. Actually, I ended up breaking his neck with my bare hands. I had to kill his two assistants with my military-issued pistol.

Anyhow, we will be docking in Ghana tomorrow. I will contact you tomorrow or the next day to try and set up a time and place to meet.

I am looking forward to finally meeting you and your family. I am so excited.

Willy Siever
Second Lieutenant
RCAF

[Hmmm...who's Willy Siever? I hope Mumba doesn't get suspicious]

From: mumba tama

Sent: Monday, September 13, 2004 6:26 PM
To: Jimmy Siever
Subject: RE: hope to see you

Hello,Jimmy Siever [Guess not.]

am so happy to hear that you are coming tomorrow plz if you are in ghana call immediaty so that we can meet and go to the company together,about the nigeria that you are saying i dont have anyideal about that, but of us have build a trust with each other even if we have not meet, so you dont have to tell me about that.

hope to see you.

bye
mumba

From: Jimmy Siever

Sent: 14-Sep-04 14:11
To: 'mumba tama'
Subject: RE: hope to see you

Hi Mumba,

I tried the phone number you sent me, but there was no answer. I am anxious to meet you and get this transaction under way. My company is leaving Ghana this Saturday.

Jimmy Siever
Second Lieutenant
RCAF

From: mumba tama

Sent: 15-Sep-04 13:21
To: Jimmy Siever
Subject: RE: hope to see you

hello,Jimmy Siever

this is the number if you are in ghana.

0244 xxx xxx.or call this number 0244 xxx xxx

am even worry because am waiting for your call plz i have speak to the maneger about you so call me even this night plz.there is no ghana code on it so call me now.

thank God you are here.

bye for now
mumba

From: Jimmy Siever

Sent: 15-Sep-04 14:47
To: 'mumba tama'
Subject: RE: hope to see you

Hi Mumba,

I just tried the first number and no one answered. I tried the second one and a man answered and said he did not know anyone named Mumba.

What is going on?

Jimmy Siever
Second Lieutenant
RCAF

From: mumba tama

Sent: 15-Sep-04 19:38
To: Jimmy Siever
Subject: i dont understand all this

Hello,Jimmy Siever

i dont understand what is going on also because i was with this phone and no one call me is my mum that call me and ask about you if we have meet.

so now all i need from you is that you tell me the hotel that you are so i can come down to the hotel and meet you there,so you send me the phone number of hotel and your name that you give themand your hotel room,because now i dont no what is gonig on my mum call today like three times to ask of you on this line 0244 431 931.

we have to see today am sleepping in internet cafe just because of you and i dont understand what is going on.

bye
mumba and brother

From: Jimmy Siever

Sent: [Sent time lost.]
To: mumba tama
Subject: RE: i dont understand all this

Hi Mumba,

I agree that it is good that we should meet. I am not staying at a hotel. I am staying on our ship.

Is there a place where we can meet, perhaps?

Jimmy Siever
Second Lieutenant
RCAF

From: mumba tama

Sent: 16-Sep-04 02:28
To: Jimmy Siever
Subject: i hope to see you there

Hello,Jimmy Siever

i think that will be the best solution,so you take a taxi and tell him that you are going to shangrila hotel bus stop,and i will like you to be there by 4:pm this evening me and my brother will be there waiting for you.

jimmy were exacly did your ship arrive in ghana, is't tema habour or were?

hope to hear from you now

bye
mumba

From: mumba tama

Sent: Thursday, September 16, 2004 8:38 AM
To: Jimmy Siever
Subject: this my second Email where are you

Hello,Jimmy Siever

this is my second mail to you the frist Email i send to you was 9:am this so plz am waiting for you reply,i spaek to te manager of the company this we will be there today,even now my mum call me and ask me if we have meet and i tell her we have not meet and she was tell me that she did not understand what is also going on and she was asking me if am i really believe that you are in ghana, every one hour am in internet cafe to see that you get back to me.shagrila hotel is the Name of the place that we are going to meet art the bus stop i well be there waithing for you so get back to me and tell me the time that you are come there just tell the taxi man that you are going to shagrila hotel area airport.

hope to see you today.

bye
mumba

From: Jimmy Siever

Sent: 16-Sep-04 10:02
To: 'mumba tama'
Subject: RE: this my second Email where are you

Hi Mumba,

I will meet you at 4p.m. at the bus stop outside of the Shagrila Hotel.

I must say that I am very excited this meeting. I have decided to leave the military. The only reason I joined the military was to make some extra money. Now that I will be getting all this money from you, there will be no need to be in he military. I have not old my superiors though. I have decided that I will just not return back to the ship.

I am concerned with the phone numbers you have given me. I really hope you will be at the bus stop. I am putting all my trust in you. You better not be fooling me.

Jimmy Siever
Second Lieutenant
RCAF

From: mumba tama

Sent: 16-Sep-04 11:58
To: Jimmy Siever
Subject: plz we have to see by all means

Hello,Jimmy Siever

i was there waiting for you but there is know one like you over there, i dont understand you jimmy, plz if you are making fun of me plz let me know, because every one of my family is waiting to see you.

me and my brother spend more than 1hr at the shangrila hotel bus stop, but iam surprise when you said you can not get me on phone, iam with my phone, plz call this number again 0244 xxx xxx, or you give me a time were we can meet you there tomorow or this night.

or tell us were you are so that we can come over there and see you.

mumba

[And now to wrap things up...]

From: Jimmy Siever

Sent: 16-Sep-04 13:28
To: 'mumba tama'
Subject: RE: plz we have to see by all means

Mumba,

WHAT IS GOING ON?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?

I waited for you for an hour at the bus stop outside of the Shangrila Hotel. You never showed up. I did not see you or your brother. Are you lying to me?

I have put my whole life on the line and now I feel you may have even been lying about the money to me.

I have left the military. Now I cannot go back. Until my ship leaves, I need to remain in hiding. It won't be long until my superiors find out I have left. They will be looking for me. Canada is a communist country and they will kill me for sure for leaving the military.

I desperately need this money. If I find out for sure that you were lying about his money, I will use my military training and hunt you done and kill you for running my life.

I do not know when I will be able to check my email again since I am now hiding from the military. I have to sleep in garbage bins to keep from being found.

That money is my only chance! DON NOT FAIL ME!!!!!

Jimmy Siever

[And the grand finale...]

From: General John Petronis

Sent: 16-Sep-04 13:22
To: [Mumba's email address]
Subject: Looking for Jimmy Siever

Dear Mr. Tama,

One of our soldiers is missing. His name is James Siever. We think he may be trying to escape the military. In order to alleviate our fears, we have opened up his email account to see where he might be.

We understand that James had made arrangements to meet with you earlier today. Since you are the one to have had the most recent contact with him, we would appreciate your co-operation in telling us where he is located.

Please be aware that aiding a military officer in leaving the military is an international criminal offence. If you choose not to help us, we have authority under international law to apprehend you and confiscate whatever property you have, including any financial assets. You could serve up to 45 years in prison.

Please respond quickly. As noted earlier, we appreciate your co-operation in this matter.

General John Petronis
RCAF

[I never heard from Mumba Tama ever again.]