Nigerian Scam Dupes Miami LawProfessor

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MIAMI - (01/07/05) -- A University of Miami law professorsays he is an innocent victim in a complicated Internet scheme thatresulted in $1.7 million being stolen from a major trucking companythrough his credit union and sent to Nigeria. Penske Truck Leasingclaims in a lawsuit against Fleet Bank (now Bank of America) andUniversity CU, in Miami, that professor Enrique Fernandez-Barrosobtained the check and helped steal the money. Fernandez-Barrosclaims he received an unsolicited email from someone with theNigerian government asking him to help a Nigerian businessmanreceive $1.7 million from Penske for a stock sale. The 73-year-oldprofessor said when the check, made out to him but apparentlycounterfeit, was FedExed to him he followed the Nigerians'instructions and deposited it in his credit union account, thenwired the $1.7 million to his Nigerian contacts. But he was neverpaid the $200,000 he was promised. Penske claims the $1.7 millioncheck was one it had sent to purchase trucks and had been stolen.The trucking company, owned by auto-racing team owner Roger Penske,is suing Fleet/BofA and the credit union, claiming they should haveprevented the theft.

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