Promoter of Fraudulent Event Pleads Guilty to New Charges



As featured in Meetings & Conventions magazine.

The promoter of a fraudulent music festival that cost investors $26 million could face over a decade in prison after admitting Thursday that he duped some of the same victims into buying tickets he never possessed to everything from the Grammy Awards to a Cleveland Cavaliers game and a dinner with NBA star Lebron James.
 
The plea from Billy McFarland brought a speedy end to his prosecution for a set of new crimes that ensure he'll spend more time in prison than if he had only been convicted of crimes related to the 2017 Fyre Festival on the Bahamian island of Exuma.
 
For that, McFarland, 26, earned tabloid headlines after he fraudulently enlisted 80 investors to pour $26 million into a music festival that was promoted as an ultra-luxurious event. Billed as "the cultural experience of the decade," it was touted on social media by Kendall Jenner, Bella Hadid, Emily Ratajkowski and other models and celebrities, but the reality was far from it.
 
Customers hoping to see Blink-182 and the hip hop act Migos arrived to learn music acts were canceled. Their luxury accommodations and gourmet food consisted of leaky white tents and cheese sandwiches. Customers lashed out on social media with the hashtag #fyrefraud.
 
A lawsuit filed in Los Angeles called the festival "nothing more than a get-rich-quick scam." It said the festival's inadequate food, water, shelter and medical care left attendees stranded on a remote island in a "dangerous and panicked situation."

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Posted: 7/30/2018 11:55:53 AM by Meeting Escrow Blog | with 0 comments


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