Friday 30 January 2009

Scam alert! The John Major Foundation

Unfortunately someone else has fallen for a scam. Ghetto Artists, a Francistown-based community theatre group were reported to be flying to London courtesy of the John Major Foundation to attend a conference on HIV/AIDS. Supposedly this foundation was established by John Major, the former British Prime Minister and the conference was due to be attended by people like former US President Bill Clinton.

The story is covered in Mmegi here.

However they were told at the last minute that their trip had apparently been postponed due to a terrorism alert. You can see the report of this here.

The bad news is that this is all a scam. There is no John Major Foundation. It doesn't exist. All that exists is a web site that is registered to an address in, yes, you've guessed it, Lagos, Nigeria.

Tragically Ghetto Artists had already paid the scammers P18,000. This was supposedly for accommodation costs but, like the Foundation, no such accommodation exists. No conference is happening. It's all make believe designed to get a victim's money.

We've contacted Ghetto Artists to let them know the bad news and we suggested that they call the Police and register a complaint. There's no chance they'll get any money back but at least the Police can record it and the rest of us can learn a lesson.

Be skeptical. There's no such thing as a free lunch.

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