(My son had just graduated and was looking for his first apartment. He answered an ad on Craigslist for an apartment that seemed too good to be true. After determining that it was indeed another one of these scumbag Nigerian swindlers based on numerous and well-known tells, I decided to have some fun and answer on my son's behalf.)

Hello Mr. Gardner-

Nick passed your reply to me; I will be sharing the apartment with him and will be the primary renter because I work in Frisco (homeless outreach) while Nick is generally on tour throughout the Northwest with the educational theatre company he works with. I wanted to touch base and thanks you so much for the quick reply; the apartment at 1330 Hayes St. sounds great and we are currently trying to move quickly on securing a place before all the returning students grab all the good ones. I will be attempting to take a look (from the outside as suggested in your reply) as soon as I am able to get a ride to Frisco.

I will fill out your application form and email it to you with all my and Nick's documents and info you've requested as soon as possible. As far as the deposit goes, I assume a check or money order would be sufficient?

I did want to say that I have found life is always full of surprises and God works in mysterious ways. My mother mentioned to my uncle that you are living in Clermont, Florida. My uncle lives nearby in Minneola, which I believe is an hour or so away from Clermont. He has offered to act as a go-between in the transfer of deposit funds, paperwork, keys, etc. I will have to say, in fact, that he insisted on it; he currently has a lot of available time, having been recently suspended from his job. Just so you know, he is is an investigator with the Criminal Frauds division at the Minneola Police department. You might have seen the news reports about the recent shooting he was involved in; he shot a suspect in a fraud case who attempted to flee. It was a big surprise when they turned around and suspended him pending an internal investigation. Just between you and me, he's a bit trigger-happy, especially where criminals and lawbreakers are concerned, especially fraudsters and conmen. I remember him visiting us one time; he got drunk and over a family dinner was telling me (to the embarrassment of my mother) that he thought all these scammers down in Florida that he had to deal with were the kind of low-life scum that pleasured themselves while smelling their mother's dirty under garments and deserved to have their testicles removed so they couldn't pollute society with their stupid offspring. (I still think he actually would prefer to shoot them, especially if no one was around to witness the act. It was only because another unit arrived on scene during the shooting that the scumbag he shot didn't get a Denver bullet enema.)

Anyway, I wanted to apologize ahead of time for his attitude and behavior. He has made it explicitly clear to me that he in fact will act as a go-between for this transaction so I am resigned to working through him in order to keep peace in the family. He has asked that you supply me with a photograph of yourself holding a copy of the Clermont News Leader or the South Lake Press as verification of your location. When you meet him to receive the check/money order and transfer the house keys, he will most likely demand to see your ID, as well as take your photo and fingerprints. Years of dealing with scumbags, conmen, and thieves has hardened his heart of the basic good will and honesty of most people in the world. But I know that you are a good, honest, and hardworking person with an apartment who God has presented to me in my search for housing.

I hope this arrangement will work for you and I look forward to a great long term lease.

Thanks again!

Harry Bols

REPLY TO A NIGERIAN APARTMENT SCAMMER ON CRAIGSLIST (true event)
by John Michael Duggan
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