Mark Cheez: Nigerian Scammer

Mark Cheez found me on craigslist and sent a message in response to my wanted ad for a room for rent. I had never gotten the opportunity to fuck with a Nigerian scammer so I jumped into action when it fell into my lap.
Mark Cheez: hi there, are you still searching? i have a available one to rent outMy Commentary: Upon receiving something like this, I was tempted just to hit delete right away but his broken English had me thinking this might not be a bot but actually a really stupid man with bad grammar who thought he was being sneaky.

Taylor R:  Can you be less specific?
Mark Cheez:Below is the house address;
# 1881 N Nash St #1503 # Arlington, VA 22209
So let me know if you interested in it so that we can proceed on the rentingMy Commentary: I looked up the address provided. It’s actually one of the most expensive residential buildings in Arlington, Va. This was clearly a rouse and was along for the ride.

Taylor R: Mark,
That’s the area I’ve been looking around. What can you tell me about it? (Rent price, utilities, room mates, dimensions of the room, etc) When would it be possible for me to come by to look the place over?

My Commentary: Letting this guy take the bait I continued to toy with him

Mark Cheez: It is 1 bedroom 1 bathroom which is $ 800 and it is included the utilities so let me know if you are interested in it so that i can send you the rental application form to proceed further okay and there is nobody in the property in the property now and the property is currently locked up and am not around now am in Ohio cincinati USA for some constructing workMy Commentary: For a guy that’s using the internet to scam people overall grammar/spelling and understanding of American society  were deplorable.For starters, if that were a real apartment its price would be quadruple what he was scamming for… I have to imagine he could milk someone for far more than $800. But maybe that’s how he nailed you- the price was so low you would have to be stupid not to jump on it.
Taylor R: Send the application over. Can you tell me when the move in date is, apartment number, and building info just so I can verify on my end?My Commentary: I just wanted to see how much info he would give away on the off chance that any yuckidy yuck that might end up falling for this scam would have all the information to verify with the apartment complex before moving in.

Mark Cheez:Thanks for interested in my house and may God bless you am really looking for a serious person who will take good care of the property on my behave coz am in the state now am in a local site in Ohio cincinati USA  for some constructing work.
Rent: $ 800 per month
Deposit required : $ 800
So fill out the rental application form below to proceed on the renting
1.Surname ______________________________
2.First Name ______________________________________
3.Last Name _______________________________________
4.Your currently Full Address
5.Contact # __________________________________________
6.Occupation __________________________________________________
7.Age ____________________________
8.Sex ____________________________________
9.Do you have a pet _______________________________________________
9.Date of moving in _____________________________________________________
10.Date of moving out ____________________________________________________
11.How many people will be living with you ?
The whole property pictures will be send to you after your response
Best Regard
Eng.Mark CheezMy Commentary: For starters, I am surprised how Mr. Cheez brought god into this thing so early as though that makes him appear to be more moral.

Then in the same sentence he explains how he needs a “serious” person to take care of his property. Although the entire thing is rife with spelling errors, one of my favorites is when he abbreviates “because” with “coz.” That’s how the serious people in a local place in Ohio cincinati USA  talk.

Note on the application he puts down Surname along with “Currently full Address.” This was easy a lazy copy job or it took him the better half of the day.
Taylor R:1.Surname ______________________________
2.First Name __Taylor_______________
3.Last Name __De Ryen________________________________
4.Your currently Full Address
__1600 Pennsylvania Ave. Washington, DC________
5.Contact # ___571-641-1312____________________________
6.Occupation _Dolphin Shiner_______________________
7.Age _27_______________________
8.Sex __male_______________________________
9.Do you have a pet _no_____________________________________
9.Date of moving in __2/1/2013_____________________________________________
10.Date of moving out __Undetermined____________________________________
11.How many people will be living with you ?
___0_____________________________________My Commentary: I had a little fun on the application.

Mark Cheez: View the attached pictures and you have to pay the deposit so that I can be able to send the keys and the document to you okay and note that the deposit you are paying will be refund back to you after you move inside the property and you will start paying the monthly payment after one month you move inside the property okay
Taylor R:Great that sounds like how a security deposit works. I’ve actually got a huge cash payment coming to me from the Prince of Zaire after I provide all of the banking and transfer fees. Where should I send my money and can I send it in cash in stead of a personal check or credit card?

My Commentary: I referenced another Nigerian scam to see if I could get him going in a different direction or maybe he could catch on that I knew he was full of shit. I even gave him the chance to ask for a credit card number or cash instead but he declined.I’d imagine a credit card is a bit more traceable where as whoever forwards the western union money order in Ohio probably cashes the order and sends a new one to this guy or his boss making this thing less risky and hard to trace.
Mark Cheez: i want you to send the deposit today to book down the place till you are moving and the keys and the document will be send to your door steps too okay and the only way for me to receive money here is through western union money transfer coz it a new site so get back to me so that i can send you the information to send the money to so that everything can be get done today and you can be able to receive the keys and the document today and move inside immediately okay and I really know the bad one had lay down bad reputation and i know how you work hard to earn you money and i also had a son studying like you too and am doing all this coz i had a son studying like you so i promise I will send the keys and the document to you and view the attached pictures to see me okay
My Commentary: I have no clue what the fuck this guy is talking about. I never gave him the impression I was studying or young for that matter. But I’m pretty sure my late night drunk texts get more to the point after a bottle of Jager than this guy does in the middle of the day.
What’s better is he sent me a grainy photo of a man in suit in front of a Christmas tree… that was thoughtful.
Taylor R: Is it ok for me to send the entirety of rent for $800 X 12 months (1 year) = $9600 in advance just so I don’t have to pay the western union fees each time?

My Commentary: I’m offering to bring him 12 times more than what he’s trying to scam me for. That’s a lot of money for a scam artist.

Mark Cheez: How to pay the monthly payment will be explain to you after you move inside the property so i want you to go and send the deposit today
okay and i will send you the payment information now okay so thatMy Commentary: He doesn’t get greedy he just stays the course.

Taylor R: So you will not accept the full amount of $9,600? Would there be a discount on the rent if I paid it all in full before I move in?My Commentary: Waving my hand- look free money!

Mark Cheez: I will bring it down for you okay so i want you to send the deposit and after you move inside the property you can paying the month payment okay
Taylor R: Alright, that works. I’d feel better if I just gave you my social security number and all my bank information including credit cards. It’s fine.
How can I western union the money to you?My Commentary: I’m asking him if he wants to steal my identity but once again he balks at it.

Mark Cheez: To make payment:  kindly go to any western union money transfer stores close to make the payment to the information below and i want you to try and send the deposit today so that everything can be get done by today and you can be able to receive the keys and the document to you
Receiver’s Info:
Receiver’s Name: Catherine A Holt
City: Cincinnati
State: Ohio
Zip code: 45226
Country: United Stated
kindly get back to me with the following information as soon as you get the deposit send via western union postal agent.
1.Sender’s Name:   ?
2.Sender’s Address:   ?
3.10 digit Mtcn #:   ? this number will be giving to you at the
western union office once the money as been paid
4.Amount Sent : ?
you can go to any of the Western Union Money Transfer stores close to you  to make the payment I want you to fulfill your promise as you promise will take good care of the property like yours, may god bless you and you family in Jesus name amen am waiting for your response soonest.

lovely pics 1.jpglovely pics 2.jpg

Eng.Mark Cheez
My Commentary: may god bless you and you family in Jesus name amen… why is this necessary… I’m not sure why he signed “Eng.” before his name.

Anyway, take a look at the pictures of the shitty house he sent me. 
Taylor R:Mark I just realized, I have 3 large dogs that live with me. Will it be ok to have them in the apartment if I lay down newspaper and promise to feed them? I also smoke cigars indoors and do impressions of people I make up in my head in front of the mirror. Is all of that ok if I move in?My Commentary: So perhaps he was too stupid to get greedy. Then maybe inserting a personality might throw him off
Mark Cheez: Yes it is allow and you can do anything to them but i want you to promise me you will take good care of the property on my behave so I want you to send the deposit today so that everything can be get done today and you can be able to book down the place and you can be able to receive the keys and the document today okay so i will be waiting for the payment information okay

My Commentary: Apparently I can get the keys today.

Taylor R: Can my friend Jason come over once in a while?My Commentary: I got the idea to start asking him about inviting my friends over to see how many people I could ask about inviting before he got frustrated.

Mark Cheez: Yes your friend can go and view it but he can’t be able to get inside until i send the keys and the document to him coz the property is currently locked so am waiting for the payment information okay
Taylor R: Am I allowed to invite my friend Jackson over once I move in?
Mark Cheez: Yes you friend can move in
Taylor R: What about my friend Kelly? Can she come over?
kelly can she come
Mark Cheez: Yes she can show over
Taylor R: Is eastern union the same thing as western union?
Mark Cheez: Are you kidding me ?My Commentary: The Cheez was getting angry…

Taylor R: No I figured it out. I filled it out now I just need to send it when I get off. When will you send the keys?
My Commentary: I sent Mark the smallest grainiest picture of a western union photo I could find. This is the original size i sent.
Mark Cheez: I can’t be able to see it here so send the payment information here okay
Mark Cheez: Let me have the information below okayMy Commentary: By now I had spent a small portion of my day pestering this guy and had some serious work to get done. I mean there’s only so much toying around you can do with a guy like this before he gives up. So I went in for the kill.

Taylor R:Mark, I dropped by the apartment and there’s already an Asian family living there and I told them to get out. They wouldn’t listen, I told them about you but they said you lied.

Mark never responded to my final e-mail. All in all I don’t really feel all that bad for people that get scammed by these guys just because it’s so easy to spot a fake. However many of them are getting better and the idea is that if you hit enough people eventually you’ll find a sucker.

Some cool websites to check out if you enjoyed this type of things: – These guys are the prosThis American Life – Enforcers Episode – One of my favorite this American Life episodes. Interviews with scammers of Niggerian scammers.

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