Man jailed for lottery scam

2011-08-20 08:00

Bloemfontein - The Bloemfontein Regional Court on Friday jailed a Nigerian man for five years after he conned an accountant out of R37 500, and transferred R20 000 from a lawyer's bank account, Volksblad newspaper reported.

Francis Opara, 36, from Soweto, Johannesburg, was found guilty on three counts of money laundering.

Bloemfontein chartered accountant Sandra Bosch received an e-mail in November 2005 stating she had won £1.5m in Graphic Lottery International's draw.

She then paid money to a "lawyer to handle her claim to the lottery".

She smelled a rat when she contacted the UK's reserve bank, the Bank of England, who told her there was no such prize. She called the police.

Opara further managed to gain access to Bloemfontein advocate Louis Lategan's bank account and transferred R20 000 into his own, at an FNB branch in Johannesburg. Lategan did not know how Opara got his bank details.

The bank froze Opara's account. He was arrested when he went into the bank to query this, Volksblad reported.

  • wombatingloves - 2011-08-20 08:16

    Old trick! The reason why this scam keeps working is due to peoples greed and stupidity!

      Acidfreak - 2011-08-20 18:39

      Mostly stupidity hey. But greed plays a massive part of it.

  • Nainen - 2011-08-20 08:19

    Its about time. But 5 years is too little. We don't know how many more has he cornered. These were not his first attempts for sure.

      tryanything - 2011-08-20 19:14

      Try that stunt in China my China..

  • darkwing - 2011-08-20 08:22

    If I had really won all the money from e-mails I would have bought America and wiped out the debt. I would have installed myself as the Queen of America. How people can fall for these scams is beyond me. Just check, the sender is usually Dr so and so. Dr. Mrs. Mary Martins is one of my regulars.

      Kraut - 2011-08-20 15:18

      best to do, in my opinion... Upon receiving a scam letter, all documentation, information and correspondence should be forwarded to Interpol. Interpol will liaise all matters regarding scams with the Commercial Crime Unit of the South African Police Service. Interpol's contact details are as follows: Tel No: (+27) 12 309 3866 Fax No: (+27) 12 309 3003/4 E-mail:

      Eidel - 2011-08-20 21:23

      I reported it many a time. to Interpol not only this address but other addres as well.They did not even bother to contact me...I have given up on it my my enpoyer block it as spam as soon as I receive such a mail. I agree, I would have been the most riches person on the planet many times over if it was not as scam.

      Collitjies - 2011-08-21 10:26

      There is a sucker born every minute and these Nigerians know this. I personally have had dozens of these SMS's on my phone the delete button takes care of them immediately.

  • Compassion - 2011-08-20 08:24

    All I can do is laugh ... People are so greedy to the point that they will believe anything when told they had "won" millions - correction, any prize - even though they know they did not enter any international lotto or competition. In most countries, only residents are eligible for any competition winnings.

      Bee and Jay - 2011-08-20 09:02

      The scam works because they say no personal entry is needed. E-mail addresses are automatically entered. If you right-click on the message in your inbox and check the prpoperties you will find the senders address which is usually a throw-away one and is a dead give-away to a scam. Or a Google search will more than likely warn you.

      jsvw - 2011-08-20 09:23

      The scam only works because people are greedy, nothing else.

  • braamc - 2011-08-20 08:25

    Funny he is Nigerian, who would have thought, they are born with a gene called criminals.

      Ex-employer - 2011-08-20 14:51

      Our lot can steal, but Nigerians can teach them a thing or two. At Government level they are on par.

  • jjhvan - 2011-08-20 08:25

    People who get conned like this deserve it. This has been all over the news for years. Can anyone be this stupid?

      webstar - 2011-08-20 18:05

      US law enforcement estimated that $1,6Billion was scammed this way during 2009. That's a lot of stupid people.

  • Mike - 2011-08-20 08:27

    A chartered accountant fell for this trick? She would've known that this prize was a scam because she didn't enter for it in the first place.

      LBS - 2011-08-20 15:11

      Yip, unbelievable!

      GrannyC - 2011-08-20 17:09

      She must be a blonde.

  • BigMoose - 2011-08-20 08:31

    A chartered accountant and an advocate got ripped off? Let's face it, it couldn't have happened to nicer people. That's one smart Nigerian, but he was also stupid enough to check why his account was frozen. Better luck next time.

  • Carl Muller - 2011-08-20 08:32

    I receive these emails daily. How can someone be so stupid to believe them. GREED!!!

  • John - 2011-08-20 08:33

    And she is a chartered accountant??

      Ex-employer - 2011-08-20 14:45

      Not a good one it seems.

  • TheBestMan - 2011-08-20 08:42

    As stupid as they may be, the nigerian should be sent back home for good, 5 yrz is a joke.

      createbus - 2011-08-20 09:36

      Now he becomes a further expense to the SA tax payer who has to pay his free board and lodge for 5 years.

      TSaR - 2011-08-20 09:44

      There's no point in sending them back home. All they do is come back. Best place for him is prison. Unfortunately he is obliged to serve only 1/6th of his prison term. He'll be out in a year. Then, if he's here illegally, they might just deport him.

      50something - 2011-08-20 11:33

      Sure, why is he not deported? Why should he be a further burden - Guess if they deprt him, he'll be back tomorrow - like the Zimbabwians

  • muagie - 2011-08-20 08:49

    Blistering IDIOT - she deserves to have her practise license revoked!

  • vegetarian - 2011-08-20 08:52

    I think you are sick Nainen. People got suspended sentences for murder, why must this foreigner get a raw deal just because he is a foreigner. What about the South African thieves who steal millions and get a pat in the back. The magistrate erred in giving this harsh sentence for such small amounts of money.

      Grant - 2011-08-20 09:01

      Are you serious? Surely not!

      logical007 - 2011-08-20 09:16

      @ vegetarian Please eat some meat!!! Your brain needs the oxygenated blood Jokes! It doesn't matter how much money he stole the point is in the manner in which he is doing it... He is defrauding innocent people out of hard earned money. If he wasn't caught now he more than likely would have continued to scam people - the amount therefore adding up.

      vegetarian - 2011-08-20 09:18

      Yes I am. I don't share your enthusiasm for outrageous punishment, especially when an accountant and an Advocate are involved since these two know what it is like to con people.

      Stevie - 2011-08-20 09:33

      Are you trying to save the planet whilst being on an entirely different one or are you baiting the more gullible of our readers?

      JustinD - 2011-08-20 13:13

      you are F&*6*ng stupid......

      Kraut - 2011-08-20 15:21

      Blame the "Turd Force" ....stupid troll!

      OZNOB - 2011-08-21 07:42


  • Runfatboyrun - 2011-08-20 09:04

    Sandra Bosch should never have been allowed to be an Accountant - How dumb could she be. I will never give my Company's books to her to do

      Joe_Dirt - 2011-08-20 09:26

      Agree...if she was my accountant I'll fire her now

      ex-pat - 2011-08-20 18:10

      It happened in 2005 - methinks she lost her job long ago!

  • cnA kcuF - 2011-08-20 09:10

    ha ha ha -who on earth still falls for this?? Dumbassess !!!

  • Doufi - 2011-08-20 09:12

    Give that man a Bells!!

  • Juggernaut - 2011-08-20 09:12

    L.O.L......a CHARTERED ACCOUNTANT! BY all that is sacred no doubt saica will have her drummed out of the "profession". Yet another example of what a bunch of airheads CAs are.

      OuBoerseun - 2011-08-20 11:39

      Now why would you call an accountant an "airhead", just because one has had a bad experience all of them are "dof". Some of the nicest people I know are either accountants, trainee accountants or are involved a profession where accounting practices are required. If you were running your own business and you don't have accounting staff you would not be able to see who owes you what, your suppliers wouldn't supply you unless it was cash and you wouldn't know if you were making a profit or not. Just remember the job ain't done until the paper work is done and if you run your own business you cannot borrow money from a bank if you don't have financial information.

      Axiom - 2011-08-20 16:48

      Have you heard the one about the accountant, an advocate and a Nigerian... Price of greed R20k. Wonder where they graduated?

      Juggernaut - 2011-08-20 18:06

      @ OuBoerseun: defenders of the faith like yourself always say it is just "one". Can you not count? More than one, two, twenty etc is a lot and there are a lot. CAs are junk, overpaid, arrogant, practically weak in most aspects of day to day accounting. They are a drag on society and some are in jail. Go and spew your attempt to divert attention from these awful "people" somewhere in a toilet near you. As for your "Just remember the job blah blah blah", wtf do you think you are? I will now go and vomit your comment up.

      OuBoerseun - 2011-08-20 22:40

      @Jugger0 - Shame you must have had a bad experience with a member of the profession, were you caught with your fingers in the till perhaps. I hope you didn't feel something hairy in your throat when you puked. You would have had to swallow fast as you were due to turn inside out.

      OuBoerseun - 2011-08-20 22:43

      @Jugger0 - You know in the lovely language of my forebears they have a saying for people like you "Jy is so goed soos 'n nul op 'n kontrak" Now put that in your pipe and smoke it, just remember when you do a Luke "Swallow fast"

  • gatvol4corru - 2011-08-20 09:14

    Conned an accountant? Wow -- silly girl! But then,the ANc is conning the masses! No jail-time for comrades! Only golf courses and millionaire's lifestyle!

  • Made_In_SA - 2011-08-20 09:29

    Greed or stupidity will get you scammed! The accountant should be charged as well for being stupid and or greedy!

  • Yar - 2011-08-20 09:46

    Why don't we send all Nigerians home. I have never seen any reports of positive things done in SA by any of them. They only ever seem to get involved in crime. Scams, drugs, etc. Don't we have enough criminals of our own?

  • Janine - 2011-08-20 09:48

    I now have Oxfam telling me that they want to give me millions of pounds to use for charity! Anyone who still falls for this kind of scam has to be either naive or dumb.

  • Franna16 - 2011-08-20 10:01

    Wow. I can't believe she believed those emails

  • Tshiamo - 2011-08-20 10:23

    He must have "married" some stupid woman from the shacks who has been used to get an ID and legalise his stay.

      Mswati - 2011-08-20 21:54

      That's a very stupid comment Mr Stevens

  • mskittylicious - 2011-08-20 10:25

    Oh good *** Sandra Bosch, were you actually that stupid?????

      Tshiamo - 2011-08-20 10:52

      And her sounds like some blonde model!

  • Linda Whelan - 2011-08-20 10:26

    Proof that any half-brain idiot can become a CA these days. This woman should not be allowed to touch any business accounts, she is clearly a liability.

      Tshiamo - 2011-08-20 10:43

      Very true Linda, in fact people with half a brain are becoming anything they want. And some of the vices are committed by so-called intellectuals, who spent years studying theories written by others. Education doesn't help you use your commonsense better!

  • george60 - 2011-08-20 10:30

    A good Nigerian is a jailed one, seems 99.00% of all nigerians are crimminals always involve in scams, drugs, money laundering and prostitution.

  • Selvan Pillay - 2011-08-20 10:34

    Deport all convicted foreign criminals.No appeal.No listening to bleeding heart Human Rights lobbyists'.Our constitution is for law abiding individuals.

  • Tshiamo - 2011-08-20 10:44

    Is there a good Nigerian? Everyone I have met seems to have something sneaky about them even owners of the local charismatic churches!

      Mswati - 2011-08-20 19:42

      Did you learn anything from them?

  • vegetarian - 2011-08-20 11:05

    Many people complain about the foolishness of this accountant girl Sandra Bosch, overlooking the fact that the woman, in an act of diligence, transferred the money to a lawyer who would ensure that the so called win is genuine before paying over the money. Another thing the amount quoted herein is peanuts to a chartered accountant, she will soon replenish her purse by conning her clients. The same goes for the Advocate.

      firoze.cooper1 - 2011-08-20 23:01

      @ vegetarian...Are you just retarted or what...go eat some meat to get your brain cells back idiot!!!

  • OuBoerseun - 2011-08-20 11:30

    My ba bo, a Bean Counter falls fell for this age old trick that has been doing the rounds for so many years now, she can't be to bright. The lawyer probably fell for the scam that you must renew your pin no or some or other phishing trick, once again appears not to be the brightest bulb in the pack if he fell for it

  • 50something - 2011-08-20 11:31

    How people can still fall for this is beyond me

  • daniel.w.gie - 2011-08-20 15:48

    this woman is an accountant . Hell . If she was in my employ , she'd be history . she was motivated by greed . and got caught , lucky the law was able to intercept this piece of scum .

  • Tieneke - 2011-08-20 16:42

    Stupid, greedy bookkeeper.

  • errol.wagner - 2011-08-20 16:51

    How could an accountant fall for this trick?

  • Ralph - 2011-08-20 18:01

    I have won soooo much money on these international lottery draws that I have to stuff the money into my garage because the bank won't take anymore.

  • GinSA1 - 2011-08-20 18:12

    A Chartered Accountant and an Advocate? Danged speechless!

  • anafrican2 - 2011-08-20 18:15

    never in my wildest dream would I have thought it possible that an accountant and an advocate could fall for these old tricks! Greed is just mindblowing.

  • Mswati - 2011-08-20 19:00

    A blackman conned greedy whites, lol.

  • N - 2011-08-20 19:00

    How stupid is this Sandra??? Own fault, not an ounce of pity.

  • zule - 2011-08-20 20:41

    They should shoot these bloody con artists when they catch them

  • Marshall - 2011-08-20 21:40

    let this be a lesson for everyone who thinks that fortune smiles on them. this fool should serve his full term and be deported immediately.

  • Gary Fowler - 2011-08-22 02:20

    Sure glad someone was caught in this scourge. If I really got all the money I've been offered, I'd be a freakin' trillionaire by now. I blog about this, trying to alert people, but some still fall for it. It's really amazing.

  • Gravo - 2011-08-30 17:57

    She's an accountant????? How dumb can you be???? My 9 year old daughter is aware of these scams and you're telling me a grown-up accountant is this dumb????

  • Dannielle - 2011-11-28 17:01

    Don't be so STUPID....really now.....

  • Allen - 2011-11-28 17:03

    Don't be too harsh, because just last week I won the UK lottery where I was informed by email "from the desk" of Mr McMoney!!! (I love it!) I also was told that a man with the same surname as me (did'nt say what it was though) had left his fortune to me in his will... I then was selected and had won the Nokia lottery?! WOW! I'm the luckiest person in the world! These crooks are getting really sophisticated by sending you all types of phishing emails to get your banking details. If you see anything like the above - DELETE!

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