A viral satirical news site tricked many people into sharing and apparently believing that missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH 370 was “hijacked by a Saudi Arabian prince” named Sahram Al-Sandshoo of Jeddah.
The article was posted on the “Daily Skid” website–which apparently publishes satire–before it was deleted.
“Prince Sahram Al-Sandshoo of Jeddah was arrested by local law enforcement agencies when the missing plane was discovered in his garden. Suspicions were heightened when Al-Sandshoo placed an advert on eBay offering a ‘Used Boeing 777 Black Box Recorder’ for sale. The Saudi authorities immediately requested a search warrant to enter his 40-acre property on the outskirts of Jeddah, the city he has princed for the past 43 years. Al-Sandshoo is a world-renowned collector of aero-memorabilia, most famous for his acquisition of ‘Wright Flyer’, one of the earliest examples of an aircraft by the Wright brothers,” the fake article reads.
It was published a few days ago and has been “liked” and shared on Facebook thousands of times.
The Daily Skid says it is “is a Satire News Website (to almost everyone)” on its disaclaimer.
The articles on the site are written by Phil Woods and Steve Smith, who are “comedy writers who have worked together since 1992.”
Malaysian officials on Monday said that the plane crashed into the Indian Ocean.
Malaysia’s prime minister gave that word late Monday in a televised announcement from Kuala Lumpur, saying there was no longer any doubt that Flight 370 went down in the southern Indian Ocean.
Some family members received a heads-up by text message, said Sarah Bajc, who has been awaiting news of the fate of her boyfriend, Philip Wood, ever since the plane disappeared March 8 on a night flight from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing with 239 people aboard.
“Malaysia Airlines deeply regrets that we have to assume beyond any reasonable doubt that MH370 has been lost and that none of those on board survived,” the text message said, according to a version forwarded in an email by Bajc. “As you will hear in the next hour from Malaysia’s Prime Minister, we must now accept all evidence suggests the plane went down in the Southern Indian Ocean.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.