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Michael Jackson scams - Already??

Posted Tuesday, June 30, 2009, at 6:43 AM

Well, well, I guess we knew it was bound to happen, but it's amazing just how fast the con artists in this world can work. Just how stupid do they think we Americans are?

I came home from work today to find this e-mail scam, which was sent to 94-year-old Advance resident, Paul Corbin. Needless to say, the approach fell completely on its face!

Paul Corbin's email

Madeline, - - -Did you get this Email from Seymour Mo.? Can you imagine a legitimate "Michael Jackson Organization and Charity" in Seymour Missouri? When I was a kid growing up in Bollinger County we had a town drunk that could put on a better show than Michael, and he was doing it for nickels and dimes to buy whisky. I don't suppose I need to tell you how much I am going to send. - - - -Paul

----- Original Message -----

From: "Michael Jackson Organization"
Sent: Sunday, June 28, 2009 3:19 PM
Subject: Donation Required If Possible.

The Scam:

Though, a lot of criticisms has been raised against "THE KING OF POP STAR" , but he remains greatest forever. Even after his death, everywhere around the world people are devastated and nobody can believe that this sudden death happened.

Many reports has been published about his death, many rumor has been carried on air with different analysis.But the only fact that we believe is that Michael is dead which bring a big sorrow to us the MICHAEL JACKSON ORGANIZATION AND CHARITY. And we say.......... "MICHAEL YOU WILL LIVE IN OUR HEARTS FOREVER !!"

Michael Jackson was a true humanitarian, an example to us all. He has devoted much time and money to a wide range of charities. He loves children and takes time out when touring secretly visiting sick children. He also has special rooms at his home Never land for sick and terminally ill children to stay over. He was listed in the 2000 edition of the Guinness Book Of World Records for breaking the world record for the "Most Charities Supported By a Pop Star".

We therefore use these medium to seek the support and donations from everyone and all fans of MICHAEL JACKSON to assist the sick, motherless and the orphans in the Michael Jackson's organization. We do this, because this is the way Michael would have wanted and to keep his good work moving.

We will publish this in face book group the amounts collected, and also we will publish this officially in local newspapers. So no amount is too small for Michael who has changed a lot of life's during his life time.

You can send your donations to us via money gram/western union to our information below;

Receiver Name : James Alexander
City : st. Seymour
State : Missouri
zip : 65746
Receipt of your donation will be mail to you as soon as we receive your donation confirmation, you are to reply us with your contact information's and the reference number of your donation from the money gram/western union.
Money gram/Western Union MTCN#:
test question:
Reply With All The details To mjorganizations@aol.com
R.I.P Michael, we love you!!

I've seen letters like this before, and they seem to have at least two characteristics in common: 1) A lack of mastery of the English language, as if the letter is written by either a foreigner or some sort of machine, 2) a lack of geographic knowledge of the United States. Whoever wrote the letter obviously chose a random town on a U.S. map, not realizing that such an organization and such a letter would be highly unlikely coming from a small town like Seymour, Missouri.

I get at least one letter like this a week on my sbcglobal address at the newspaper office; once I see the outrageous name (usually not as Americanized as this one), I immediately DELETE the e-mail, as if it were a SNAKE! Fortunately, my home e-mail has a better scam filter, and these rip-offs rarely sneak through.

It's a dangerous place out there, folks! Watch your step!!

From the green, innocent hills of Tillman, Mo., this is your rural reporter, signing off on another beautiful summer's day.

Showing comments in chronological order
[Show most recent comments first]

Madeline - -When I was reading the solicitation letter from the Michael Jackson charity, and came on to the part where it said "Michael was a true humanitarian and he will live in our hearts forever" I had to make a heaving trip to the bathroom. I have not fully decided wheather I should send a donation to Michael, or send some to Bernard Madoff to help get him out of jail

-- Posted by paulcorbin on Mon, Jun 29, 2009, at 9:20 PM

I just wonder how effective a letter like this is. Obviously, it will have little effect on the older generation, and I would think that the younger ones, the MJ fans, would be too savvy to fall for it, as well.

I used to occasionally see this kind of broken English on the Match.com site, and it was obviously an attempt to scam some unsuspecting woman into connecting with a con man.

Very scary!

-- Posted by goat lady on Tue, Jun 30, 2009, at 6:50 AM

MD, being a savvy newspaper woman in the mold of Nellie Bly, I'm surprised you didn't check with the Webster County Citizen and the Seymour Chamber of Commerce to find out if Mr. James Alexander is a fine upstanding citizen who is simply more proficient at running a profitable business than English grammar. (BTW, I looked at the Seymour CoC website and they are having a 4th of July Bash featuring BBQ Pork with potato salad and BBQ beans! Yummy!!!)

Very successful companies sometimes operate out of very small towns. Remember that E. Haldeman-Julius became the world's pulp paperback king in the early to mid 1900s, and his entire book publishing operation was in Girard, Kansas.

-- Posted by FJGuy on Tue, Jun 30, 2009, at 1:44 PM

Have you seen the reports on how much money the estate of Michael Jackson will be making off the sale of his work? It's astounding. He's selling way more records now than he did when he was alive. That's a normal trend after a performer dies. His estate will have plenty of money to help the widows and orphans, at least until the world forgets him again.

You're right Ms. Madeline - everyone needs to guard against scams of all sorts. There's no end of people out there who think they deserve your money more than you do.

Gotta love Paul Corbin. He's hit the nail on the head again.

-- Posted by Ducky on Wed, Jul 1, 2009, at 11:58 AM

Another thing I've learned about these scams is they ALWAYS want you to send the money Western Union. I was scammed, once upon a time, and that's how we had to send our money. Needless to say, we got screwed, and that's what all the rest of these people want you to do. Why? Because Western Union can't be tracked, it can't be held as a receipt with anyone except for large corporations such as Verizon, and anyone can get to one. Another one bites the dust!

-- Posted by mrsdolphin on Wed, Jul 1, 2009, at 1:32 PM

Before sending my sizable donation to the Michael Jackson organization and charity, I felt that I should do some checking to see if this is a legitimate charity, so I called the city police of Seymour Missouri. They had never heard of this organization. They also did not know the James Alexander, who is suppose to receive the money.

I gave the city police of Advance a copy of the e-mail I received and he said that he would play around with it.

Does anyone know how we could find where this e-mail came from and who sent it

-- Posted by paulcorbin on Wed, Jul 1, 2009, at 2:23 PM

FJGuy, help us out on this one, Mr. Techno Buff! I have no idea how to track down people like that!

Thanks for following up on this one, Paul Corbin!

-- Posted by goat lady on Wed, Jul 1, 2009, at 10:11 PM

Me either. I've see McGee do it on NCIS, but that television. Alas.

-- Posted by Ducky on Thu, Jul 2, 2009, at 1:56 PM

MD and GL, apparently the email originated from office@facecharity.org. Facecharity.org is an international charity for "children in need" based in Belgium. See their website that uses UK english spellings, http://www.facecharity.org/site/EN/PROJE... . Facecharity.org appears legitimate and they have denied any knowledge of the email. It could be a rogue employee within the organization is trying to supplement their income, or maybe someone masking that he or she is operating out of an Internet cafe in Nigeria.

-- Posted by FJGuy on Thu, Jul 2, 2009, at 2:50 PM

Good work FJGuy.

-- Posted by Ducky on Fri, Jul 3, 2009, at 7:20 AM

Good sleuthing, FJ!

It's just amazing how many really scarey people there are out there, able to invade our lives from across the world! We can't put the genie back in the box, even though we sometimes wish we could!

-- Posted by goat lady on Fri, Jul 3, 2009, at 7:44 AM

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Madeline DeJournett
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Madeline (Giles) DeJournett is the Advance writer for the North Stoddard Countian. A retired high school English/history teacher, she spent 32 years teaching in 5 schools in Missouri and Alaska. These days, she lives quietly with a menagerie of wild and domestic animals on 52 secluded acres in the remote Tillman hills south of Advance. She graduated from Dexter High School in 1960 and Southeast Missouri State in 1964. She can be contacted at advancensc@sbcglobal.net.
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