Consumer Fraud Reporting
Rev.Nicolas Mogan
Reporting on the Latest Frauds, Scams, Fake Lotteries, Spams and Hoaxes

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AV product:

Classified Ad Scams: Renting an Apartment

Scams and scammers using these names: Rev.Nicolas Mogan, Gramercy Park Apartment for $600, all utilities included???

Are you looking to Renting an Apartment? Did "Rev.Nicolas Mogan" claiming to be from bbb contact you? Note that he says:

"that is why we took the keys and document along with us here in west africa.Pls I want you to note that,I am a kind and honest man and also I spent alot on my property that I want to give you for rent". 

That's a clue to a scam right there!

Here are the clues that this is a scam:

  1. First, you will notice the syntax and grammar.  Often, is it not pathetically bad, it's just plain strange. It looks like it was written by someone who is not a native English-speaker, and writes very rarely in English. No Reverend we know has spelling and grammar this bad. One could say it's god-awful! This is very typical of scammers, who largely are in Nigeria and have little formal education and probably none in English.
  2. The scammers NEVER can meet in person.  They may have a $50,000 boat to sell to you or want to buy a $45,000 car from you, but somehow they are always "out of the country" on business, in in the army, whatever.  In the real world, anyone buying or selling something for more than a few hundred dollars, wants to see it first.  And especially when renting a house or apartment!
  3. The scammers typically ramble on about issues ("that is why we took the keys and document along with us here in west africa.Pls I want you to note that,I am a kind and honest man and also I spent alot on my property that I want to give you for rent") that are irrelevant to such a sale or rental; such as, how they are doing this for charity, or recently moved to the UK, or are traveling in Africa right now.  You as a seller / landlord, don't and shouldn't care about these issues: you are trying to find a legitimate buyer or renter for your item at a fair market price.  The scammer knows this and is merely trying to cloud the issue and provide excuses for not complying with the basic requirements of a sale. He's also trying to engender trust; one of the key elements of any con game.
  4. Scammers frequently refer to "trust", "faith" and God; in ways that no rational person in western Society would ever do in a business transaction, as in, "I know I can trust you", or "my faith in God tells me to enter this agreement with you".
  5. Look at the huge number of misspellings, weird use of capital letters, poor punctuation and made-up words.  Again, this is typical of the scammer filth who live and operate in Nigeria.

An actual email that illustrate this type of CraigsList scam:

Any highlighted passages below are to draw your attention to typical scam clues:

Email 1 - from the victim:

I replied to a rental ad on craigslist, to inquire more about the place and below is the e-mail I received from the lister of the ad. Since $600 was a too good to be true for a New York 1-bedroom, I searched the net for similar scam mails, found a couple similar ones, and wanted to report it here.

Email 2 - from the scammer:

Thanks for your response to my aprtment,it is my gladness to hearing from you.I am Rev.Nicolas  Mogan ,the owner of the aprtment you are making enquiry of.Actually I resided in the house with my family,such as my wife and my only daugther before I got posted to west africa nigeria to complete my missionary work with God.Our one bedroom apartmnt is still available for rent and I hope you are okay with the price of  $600 with All the utilities like Electricity, Water, Internet, Satellite TV, Air conditioning, Clothes Dryer, Telephone, Hydro, Washer, Security and heating.

We try to look for an agent that we can give the document before we left but could not see and we are as well as dont want our aparetment to be use any how in our absence that is why we took the keys and document along with us here in west africa.Pls I want you to note that,I am a kind and honest man and also I spent alot on my property that I want to give you for rent,so I will solicit for your absolute mentenance of this apartment and want you to treat it as your own,is that taken,it is not the money the main problem but want you to keep it tidy all the time so that I will be glad to see it neat when i came for a check up.I do that once in a while.I also want you to let me have trust in you as i always stand on my word.

So I hope you can promise us to take very good care of our apartment.So get back to me on how you could take care of our apartment or perhaps experience you have in renting an apartment.Here is the full address of where my apartment is located at 24 Gramercy Park South, New York NY 10003

I look forward to hearing from you ASAP so that I can forward you an application to fill out and discuss on how to get the apartment for rent,also are you ready to rent it now or when?

Thanks and you are welcome

Best Regards

 Rev.Nicolas  Mogan


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Names used by scammers in the examples on this page and others often belong to real people and businesses who often have no knowledge of nor connection to the scammer's use of their name and information.  Sample scam emails and other documents are copies of the scam to help potential victims recognize and avoid it.  You should presume that any names used and presented here in a scam are either fictitious or used without their legitimate owner's permission.
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