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Another 419 scam ring nicked

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Amsterdam police this week arrested another 419 cell and confiscated computers, fake travel documents, and bogus banking documents.

The five suspects are being held pending extradition to the US, where they could face up to 20 years in prison.

The fraudsters in this scheme allegedly fleeced hundreds of victims from the US, Norway, India, and Greece with promises of charitable contributions from widows of deposed dictators and beleaguered petroleum moguls.

According to Ultrascan Advanced Global Investigations, a Dutch private investigation firm which has been studying 419 scams worldwide for a decade, the scam ring has been active in Europe since 2003 and has members in Germany, Spain, the UK, France, Italy, and Canada.

In February, Dutch police also arrested 21 419 fraudsters in three internet cafes in Amsterdam on similar charges, several of whom face extradition to the US.

Despite the fact the Dutch police has drastically stepped up its efforts to apprehend 419 scammers in recent years, Ultrascan warns that the arrests may not be enough as gang members are easily replaced. Also hampering enforcement efforts are the dispersion of the crime rings to smaller Dutch cities.

Ultrascan this week launched a world fraud map, which shows locations where 419ers are working or are sighted on a regular basis. ®

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