No, a Saudi prince did not lose $106.7b playing online poker

What is it with Saudi royals and outlandish reports of their alleged gambling excesses?

On Wednesday, India-based news agency Asian News International (ANI) published a report that claimed Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman had squandered the sum of US$106.7b playing online poker.

The vast sum the prince allegedly lost neatly corresponds to the amount of shakedown cash the regime hoped to garner in exchange for releasing the dozens of royal family members detained in November for alleged corruption. The ANI report claims that the prince sheepishly detailed how he squandered the funds in an address to Saudi Arabia’s Consultative Assembly.

In decidedly un-royal language, bin Salman allegedly confessed that his epic bad run was the result of a “series of unbelievably shitty hands.” The prince allegedly claimed he’d only intended to play “one quick game of Texas Hold’em but got sucked in and the next thing I knew it was 5am and I was $106.7b down.”