Three U.S. lawyers have notified us that they have been contacted by the purported Reiko Mitsuo with regards to a divorce settlement agreement. This is a fraud we have seen before under several other names and similar scenarios. For details on how this fraud works and a full list of names attached to it see our Confirmed Fraud page.
Here is an example of the initial email:
From: firstname.lastname@example.org [mailto:email@example.com]
Sent: Wednesday, January 11, 2012 8:21 AM
Good day,i sent you a mail of a divorce settlement with my ex husband and i
am yet to hear from you,please want to know if you are still interested in
helping,so that we can get this done with.
A lawyer who replied got this response and supporting documentation:
I am in receipt of your email. Currently am living in South Korea for an assignment and Waltson Mitsuo my ex lives in your CA, Due to the time difference (+13hrs EST) it is a little bit difficult to determine the best time to call you. We agreed under this Collaborative Law Agreement attached to this mail for a onetime cash settlement of $496,500.00USD to his credit, he has paid me $183,500.00USD but still owing $313,000.00USD. I am hereby seeking your firm`s assistance in collecting the balance from him or litigate this matter if he fails to pay because the proposed time for payment has long elapsed. He is aware of my intention to seek legal actions. I will be pleased to provide further information on this matter on request. I have already advised him I am planning on retaining your firm. If you are in interested in taking on this matter, kindly send me your firm’s service retainer agreement for my preview.
Thank you and have a pleasant day.
Home Address: Sangsu-dong 481-10 Hoseong
Building 9G9 Mapo-Gu, Seoul Korea
How to handle a real or suspected fraud
If you have been targeted by any of these frauds, please forward any of the emails and supporting documents that you have received to firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you suspect you are acting on a matter that might be a fraud, call LAWPRO at 1-800-410-1013 (416-598-5899). We will talk you through the common fraud scenarios we are seeing and help you spot red flags that may indicate you are being duped. This will help you ask appropriate questions of your client to determine if the matter is legitimate or not. If the matter you are acting on turns out to be a fraud and there is a potential claim, we will work with you to prevent the fraud and minimize potential claims costs.
If you have been successfully duped, please immediately notify LAWPRO as there may be a claim against you.
For more immediate updates on fraud and claims prevention, subscribe to the email or RSS feed updates from LAWPRO’s AvoidAClaim blog.
Fraud Fact SheetMore fraud prevention information and resources are available on the practicePRO Fraud page, including the Fraud Fact Sheet, a handy reference for lawyers and law firm staff that describes the common frauds and the red flags that can help identify them.