We regularly get e-mails that begin in this fashion:

Dear Friend,

It is obvious that this proposal will come to you as a surprise. This is because we have not met before but I am inspired to sending you this email following the huge fund transfer opportunity that will be of mutual benefit to the two of us.

However, I am Barrister Evans MARTINS Attorney to the late Engr. Ronald Johnson, a national of Northern American, who used to work with Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC) in Nigeria. On the 11th of November, 2008. My client, his wife and their three children were involved in a car accident along Sagamu/Lagos Express Road. Unfortunately they all lost their lives in the event of the accident, since then I have made several inquiries to several Embassies to locate any of my clients extended relatives, this has also proved unsuccessful.

But this past week we also got this (as a blind carbon copy):

—– Original Message —–

From: “Mark Edward” <mrmarkedward1964@gmail.com>

To: “undisclosed-recipients:”

Sent: Thursday, April 13, 2017 5:40 AM

Subject: Hiahiatia tō āwhina te.

I tuhituhi ahau ki a koutou i te īmēra wiki whakamutunga e pā ana ki tetahi o koutou mema whānau e mate ki konei i roto i to tatou whenua, a mahue etahi nui nui o te moni i roto i tetahi o to tatou pēke konei whakaae kia aroha te taenga o tenei īmēra mō ētahi atu kōrero.


Basically it says that a member of [our] family died last week in his country and left a huge amount of money in one of the banks there.   A spam e-mail written in Te Reo Maori?  It’s a first for us.  Do the Nigerians think it’s spoken more widely than English is?  At least they show more interest in Te Reo than most Pakeha do.