A lawyer in the UK notified us that they received an email from the purported Wang Osamu of Wuhan Iron & Steel with regards to a commercial debt collection scam. For examples of other names attached to this kind of fraud see our Confirmed Fraud Page. For an explanation of how this fraud works see our Fraud Fact Sheet.
Here is the initial email:
From: Wang. Osamu [mailto:email@example.com]
Sent: 21 May 2013 18:55
I need a Business/Commercial litigation lawyer who can handle a collection issue. A referral would be welcome if this is not your area of practice Regards, Wang Osamu.
Replying to the email brought this reponse:
We received your message and let me formerly introduce you to Wuhan Iron & Steel (Group) Corporation. We are located in the Capital city of Qingshan District of Wuhan, China SR Hong Kong. We are a proud firm that has achieved so much in the IRON & STEEL industry. I on behalf of Wuhan Iron & Steel (Group) Corporation wish to inform you that we have received your email. I want you to know that our interest in collecting our debt proposal is highly appreciated. In regards to your Email, I am very pleased with your response. Our customers in your country are delaying in getting their invoice amount paid on time which their major reason is the present economic crisis; this is really affecting our company. My company is in the process of notifying our customers about acquiring a legal representative and no legal actions is being taken against them yet because of our good relationship that has been established for the past four to five years. Please do not contact them yet until we inform you to do so.
This is the name of the company Complexatools whose invoice of the supplied IRON & STEEL is overdue: Complexatools. The total amount owed by these companies is approximately GBP £850,000.00 Review the conflict check to see if you are representing this company, if not send us your retainer agreement for our review and conclusion. Hope to hear from you soon by email above and I will call you for more information.
Wuhan Iron & Steel (Group) Corporation.
Osumu Partners Funds, Inc. – The Japan Fund
Qingshan District of Wuhan,
Address : 36th Floor, PCCW Tower, Taikoo Place,
979 King’s Road, Quarry Bay, Hong Kong SAR
Copyright © Wuhan Iron & Steel (Group) Corporation, Ltd. All rights reserved.
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.
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Fraud Fact Sheet More 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.