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August 10, 2004

Nigerian Astronaut Stranded

Priceless

Who hasn't received one of those confidential offers from an African source to take a cut amounting to many millions of dollars in return for letting your bank account be used for a little laundering of funds that are proving problematical for whatever reason? (Believe it or not, there are people who not only respond seriously, but are lured into these scams to the extent of traveling to distant places, expecting to close a deal.) Tim Gleason, our site administrator, came across one which will surely take some beating. The opening paragraph reads:

Subject: Nigerian Astronaut Wants To Come Home
Dr. Bakare Tunde
Astronautics Project Manager
National Space Research and Development Agency
(NASRDA)
Plot 555
Misau Street
PMB 437
Garki, Abuja, FCT NIGERIA

Dear Mr. Sir,

REQUEST FOR ASSISTANCE-STRICTLY CONFIDENTIAL

I am Dr. Bakare Tunde, the cousin of Nigerian Astronaut, Air Force Major Abacha Tunde. He was the first African in space when he made a secret flight to the Salyut 6 space station in 1979. He was on a later Soviet spaceflight, Soyuz T-16Z to the secret Soviet military space station Salyut 8T in 1989. He was stranded there in 1990 when the Soviet Union was dissolved. His other Soviet crew members returned to earth on the Soyuz T-16Z, but his place was taken up by return cargo. There have been occasional Progrez supply flights to keep him going since that time. He is in good humor, but wants to come home. . . .

Full saga at scamorama.com/space.html. It almost gives me inspiration for a new book.

 
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