Message from the Consul
Beware of Inheritance Scam/Fraud
The story usually starts as follows:
You receive a letter or an e-mail from a bank in Thailand indicating that one of your distant relative (often your uncle) was among the victims of the air crash in Russia few years ago. However, your distant relative (which you might never know you ever have before) leaves behind a great fortune in Thai bank account and you are the one who inherit it. The letter usually includes a copy death certificate of your relative, deposit slip which show huge sum of money in the account, and a certification of incorporation of your relative’s company.
So, what’s the catch? You will need to be presented at the court in Thailand in the next few days to inherit your relative’s fortune.
You are facing with prospect of being rich but require to travel all the way to Thailand to claim your fortune. Suddenly, a law firm in Thailand contacts you, offering their service to be your representative in Thailand to process all of your necessary legal requirement. The law firm will write you in very formal style, use a lot of legal jargon and refer to Thai laws in details. Of course, there will be fees for the service, but comparing with what you will get, it sounds like a good investment. Right?
You decide to try your luck and pay service fee to the law firm. For some, that amount of money might be amount to their entire saving.
After you paid for the service, you will never hear from them again, along with all of your money.
We always feel heartbreaking every time we heard such story from those who were the victim of this kind of scam/fraud. The documents that the scammers provided in order to support their story are fake, and they are lazy enough to use the same document to scam different person. Some were lucky enough to ask us before committing any money to the scammer. However, many were not so lucky and already paid huge sum of money for the inherit that never really existed. If you want to pursue any litigation against scammer/cheater, you may need to report the case to the Royal Thai Police in Thailand.
We hope that our warning might help preventing you from being scammed or deceived in the future. We believe that this general rule still holds true in most case: if something is too good to be true, then probably it is not.