Pilot Sight

A fake news web site reported that the pilot of long-missing Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 had mysteriously resurfaced in a Taiwan hospital.


Claim: The pilot of missing Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 reappeared in Taiwan two years after the plane disappeared.

False

Example: [Collected via e-mail and Twitter, February 2016]

I read this article and it seems fake. Confirm?

Origin:On 10 February 2016, the web site Link Beef published an article reporting that Ahmad Shah, the pilot of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 (which disappeared without a trace on 8 March 2014), was found alive in Taipei, Taiwan, in February 2016:

THE PILOT OF INFAMOUS FLIGHT MH370 OF MALAYSIA AIRLINES THAT DISAPPEARED IN MARCH 2013, CAPTAIN ZAHARIE AHMAD SHAH, HAS MYSTERIOUSLY REAPPEARED IN A TAIWAN HOSPITAL ON MONDAY, SUFFERING FROM SEVERE DEHYDRATION AND SOME TYPE OF AMNESIA.

The 53-year-old pilot was transported to the Taipei Adventist Hospital by a couple of villagers from a nearby town. They claimed to have found the man while he was lying unconscious on the banks of the Tangshui River.

He finally woke up almost 16 hours after arriving at the hospital, but couldn’t remember his name or how he arrived in Taipei. He was quickly identified by his fingerprints, which instantly attracted global attention from the media and from various Asian governments.

The doctors who have been treating him believe that he may be suffering from regressive amnesia, caused by a major stress or life-threatening situation.

The purported image of Ahmad Shah that appeared at the top of the article did not actually depict the pilot of the missing jetliner. A January 2014 news article identified the individual in the photograph as Burmese man Aung Myo Oo. Also the doctor depicted in Link Beef's article was identified in a separate, unrelated article as Dr. Jeyaindran Sinnadurai (not Dr. Syed Boon Sulong).

As suggested by the misattributed and unrelated photographs, there was no truth to the claim that the pilot of missing MH370 was found alive and well in 2016. Link Beef is one of a number of fake news sites that traffics in publishing fictional clickbait stories, including a report about a gang member's gold plating his genitals, and another reporting the birth of a "lab-grown" baby. Unlike other "satire" web sites, Link Beef features no disclaimer warning readers its content is entirely fabricated.

Last updated: 10 February 2016

Originally published: 10 February 2016

Kim LaCapria is a New York-based content manager and longtime snopes.com message board participant. Although she was investigated and found to be "probably false" by snopes.com in early 2002, Kim later began writing for the site due to an executive order unilaterally passed by President Obama during a secret, late-night session (without the approval of Congress). Click like and share if you think this is an egregious example of legislative overreach.



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