SCAM ALERT [07/2015]: Reverend Martin Drysdale of Good Wood Baptist Church, South Africa

Posted on July 14, 2015

Be on the lookout for this e-mail scam targeted to professional speakers:

Multiple reports of this scam have been reported to SpeakerMatch in the past month. One member reached out to the real Rev. Martin Drysdale and received confirmation that his name is in fact being used fraudulently.

Another version is from Rev Ziphozihle Siwa at The Methodist Church of Southern Africa in Johannesburg,
South Africa.

The language is very similar and it has the same phone number.

[Update] We received further documentation of two additional emails in the scammer's email sequence where funds are eventually requested from the speaker for a work permit (a big red flag!). See below.

View more documented scams at:

Version 1 of 1st message from scammer:

---------- Forwarded message ----------

from_name: Reverend.Martin Drysdale
    comments: Gods blessing,We hope this message meets you in good health. I am Rev Martin Drysdale,Teaching Elder and Pastor of Good Wood Baptist Church,South Africa.On behalf of the Church, I am elated to inform you that we would love to engage your services to speak and educate our congregation as our goal of organizing this seminar is to enact success

Version 2 of 1st message from scammer:

---------- Forwarded message ----------

Date: July 12, 2015 at 5:28:13 AM EDT
To: [removed for privacy]
From: Reverend Martin Drysdale <>
Subject: New Message From [removed for privacy]

Gods blessing,We hope this message meets you in good health. I am Rev Martin Drysdale,Teaching Elder and Pastor of Good Wood Baptist Church,South Africa.On behalf of the Church, I am elated to inform you that we would love to engage your services to speak and educate our congregation as our goal of organizing this seminar is to enact success & leadership traits plus motivation in our congregation which consists business-minded personnel's, sports aspiring youths and illustrious women.The event is billed for the month September 2015.

        Please, we would gladly like for you to convey to us your
availability for the early Month of September 2015 as it will well fit
in your schedule.Also, please we would as well appreciate if you get in-touch with us in ample time so we can start corresponding the details.

 Thank you very much and expecting to hear from you soon.

  Remain Blessed.

Martin Drysdale
+27 787069612

Goodwood Baptist Church.
Cape Town.
South Africa.

"You also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house"
– 1 Peter 2:5

Fax: 0867107639

2nd email from scammer:

---------- Forwarded message ----------

From: Martin Drysdale <>
Date: Sun, Jul 12, 2015 at 5:52 PM
Subject: Re: Thank you for reaching out to us
To: [Removed]


Thank you very much [name]. I have a few more details to share with you
so you can have more insight on the conference and what the Church
stands for as a whole.

  The Church has always been involved in new and inspiring
developments,organizing this conference is one of the few events we
are coordinating in which helps us connect with people and turn their
lives around positively.Inviting a speaker from overseas is something
that will go along way in boosting the morals of our congregation and
inspiring them, I am well aware real motivation is from
inside,motivational talks only stimulates so as for the 'inside'
motivation to exert to the exterior, this, we are looking forward to
experiencing when you come for this conference. We are expecting
upliftment and the overall boost in morale of attendees. The lecture
will be published in this year's edition of our 'World Awareness'
magazine which we are just launching and copies can be obtained at
Pretoria office.

   With a Church uniting as One Big Family, We have been able to draw
people closer to the word and also try to teach them values with which
they can survive the world. It is due to this age-long ritual that we
have decided to organize a conference such as this since the doctrine
of the Church lectures has evolved over the years we are proud to say
we are keeping the hope alive! We will have over a thousand people in

  We organized this seminar and workshop also in the hope of
enlightening our congregation, to motivate them, mentor them on how to
achieve set goals and how to grow despite all odds and remain
steadfast, how to overcome personal and business obstacles and still
remain standing after the storm. We had Jackie MBE, author of 'Chasing
the Dragon' over from HongKong for a dinner speech on the 12th of
December last year and it was very entertaining and spirit-filled. We
are expecting the speech to last for about 60mins-90mins and a
question & answer session thereafter.The  event is billed to hold on
the 3rd - 5th of September this year,you are to choose which of the
three days is convenient for you to speak and if you will be available
to speak for the three days, we will be more than glad as long as it
fits in to our budget.

  You were fingered to speak at this event on the recommendation of
our outreach program member in diaspora and after checking your
credentials and after reading blogs about you, we received the Lords
direction to invite you to speak in this event and we also believe you
are more than capable to deliver in this occasion.

   The conference theme carefully chosen by the Lords' inspiration due
to the backdrop of the present situation here in  South Africa and
next year's Seminar has been tagged. 'Surpassing your limits:
Attaining the unattainable'. It is typically called the SOLA 5
conference .
    You can email us the keynote you would like to speak on as we
would want you to be convenient with the keynote topic so we decided
it would be better you choose it yourself as long as its motivational
and inspiring! We will as well need your bio to put up on our website
and start to design posters as well as hand bills.

      We are offering USD 25,000.00 excluding all other expenses .This
fee is the net speaking fee allocated by our sponsors.
    All travel arrangements such as Flight fare, Speaking fee deposit
as well as Hotel accommodation will be taken care of by us as soon as
you honor this invitation. The events committee will send you all
binding documents including a Letter of Invitation and Contract
Agreement as well.
     Email us in ample time and any questions you may have so we can move ahead.

 Remain Blessed.

3rd email from scammer:

---------- Forwarded message ----------

Greetings unto you [name]

  With my understanding , All USA, AU and EU citizens coming into
South Africa does not require a visa as you will be stamped on arrival
for 90 days . However since you will be speaking at this event and
being paid for it, you are regarded to as a temporary worker and thus
require a work permit . We do have a member of our Church who works
with the home affairs HQ and can guide you through the process of
obtaining one, She has been of help to us in the past on numerous
occasion . The event organizing committee will explain more on this

  Do let us know if you have more question or if you will like to proceed .

Remain Blessed​

Martin Drysdale
+27 787069612

Goodwood Baptist Church.
Cape Town.
South Africa.

"You also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house"
– 1 Peter 2:5

Fax: 0867107639

Specific Request for Money from scammer:
Begin forwarded message:

Subject: FW: URGENT !!! [Name]'s Work permit !!!!
Date: July 22, 2015 at 9:09:25 AM CDT
Cc: "[removed]" <[removed]>

Greetings Reverend Martin and [name removed]

I got this email from Pamela this morning and i think we should act on it in timely manner . 

John Whaits

Subject: URGENT !!! [name]'s Work permit !!!!
Date: Wed, 22 Jul 2015 16:06:41 +0200

Good Morning John, At the start of work today, I must tell you that I was notified by the issuing dept. that [name]'s work permit can not be issued out as at yet, Non-African Immigrants coming into the Republic of South Africa and taking up a paid job will need to secure their stay with a bond otherwise referred to as a repatriation fee, And since [name] falls under such category as he is a non-African immigrant, The home affairs dept. has required that such applicants pay a REFUNDABLE sum of 48,000 ZAR as a 'Bond' to enact their stay. As soon as he arrives back in his home country, the fee will be paid back in full. I was not aware of this initially as the power of 'jurisdictional bond' has not being exercised for a while. But the DG at the dept. has decreed it should be applicable and be 100% effective henceforth for working immigrants applying for the work permit. 
   I am sending you this email now so you can find a way to forward to me the funds so I can make the payments asap since you have advised that time is of essence in this application,If this payment is not made today or tomorrow , I do not guarantee the permit will be out before the commencement of this event, I will forward to you the 'bond holding letter' in the name of the applicant which is Bruce so he will be able to claim the funds at the South Africa council when he gets back home. 
   John, send the funds to me on [name]'s behalf as he might be relunctant to send such amount of money, So I need you to forward the funds on his behalf, Once he is back in the United States, the bond will be liquidated and you will negotiate on how to have the funds back.
Pamela. T
Sent from my iPad

Apply For This Opportunity!

Since 2001, SpeakerMatch has been helping speakers get connected with meeting planners and others who hire speakers.

More Information

Already a member? Click here to login.