Fyre Festival organizer Billy McFarland charged with wire fraud

Fyre Festival organizer Billy McFarland charged with wire fraud
Source: https:
Source: https:

William “Billy” McFarland, organizer of the disastrous Fyre Music Festival, has been charged with wire fraud in connection with a scheme to defraud investors.

Joon Kim, acting United States attorney for the Southern District of New York, and William Sweeney Jr., assistant director in charge of the New York field office of the FBI, announced the charges Friday. In the announcement, it was revealed that McFarland was arrested and will face Judge Kevin Fox on Saturday.

“As alleged, William McFarland promised a ‘life changing’ music festival but in actuality delivered a disaster,” Kim said in a statement. “McFarland allegedly presented fake documents to induce investors to put over a million dollars into his company and the fiasco called the Fyre Festival. Thanks to the investigative efforts of the FBI, McFarland will now have to answer for his crimes.”

Sweeney added in the statement that McFarland “truly put on a show” when misrepresenting the financial status of his businesses. He added, “In the end, the very public failure of the Fyre Festival signaled that something just wasn’t right, as we allege in detail today.”

In emails provided to Mic by a source close to the matter, festival organizers attempted to alert McFarland to the many issues the festival was facing, including a severe lack of bathroom facilities for the thousands of attendees about to descend on the island. However, McFarland and his partners chose to continue forward with the festival despite the many frantic warnings.

McFarland is charged with one count of wire fraud, which carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison, according to the statement.

How much do you trust the information in this article?

Stacey Leasca

Stacey Leasca is a news writer with Mic. Her byline has appeared in Travel+Leisure, the Los Angeles Times, GOOD Magazine and more. When not writing you can find her surfing in Southern California.

MORE FROM

Donald Trump Jr. and Paul Manafort now to testify before Senate committee behind closed doors

Trump Jr. and Manafort have avoided a subpoena and will testify behind closed doors — for now.

Hope Hicks reportedly tried to rein Trump in during explosive ‘Times’ interview. It didn’t work.

The low-profile Trump Whisperer is one of the few in the president's orbit to enjoy job security.

Scaramucci once asked Obama if he’d be softer on Wall Street. It didn’t end well.

The exchange came during a CNBC town hall on the financial crisis, two years into Obama’s presidency.

Trump blasts Hilary Clinton, Comey and ‘Amazon Washington Post’ in tweet storm

He also defended Don Jr. and called Democrats "obstructionists" with "no ideas."

What does Sean Spicer’s resignation mean for the rest of Trump’s inner circle?

Many are already wondering if Spicer's departure could portend more shakeups to come.

How the messy New York City subways are hurting vulnerable New Yorkers the most

The New York subway system is a mess — and here's who's suffering the most.

Donald Trump Jr. and Paul Manafort now to testify before Senate committee behind closed doors

Trump Jr. and Manafort have avoided a subpoena and will testify behind closed doors — for now.

Hope Hicks reportedly tried to rein Trump in during explosive ‘Times’ interview. It didn’t work.

The low-profile Trump Whisperer is one of the few in the president's orbit to enjoy job security.

Scaramucci once asked Obama if he’d be softer on Wall Street. It didn’t end well.

The exchange came during a CNBC town hall on the financial crisis, two years into Obama’s presidency.

Trump blasts Hilary Clinton, Comey and ‘Amazon Washington Post’ in tweet storm

He also defended Don Jr. and called Democrats "obstructionists" with "no ideas."

What does Sean Spicer’s resignation mean for the rest of Trump’s inner circle?

Many are already wondering if Spicer's departure could portend more shakeups to come.

How the messy New York City subways are hurting vulnerable New Yorkers the most

The New York subway system is a mess — and here's who's suffering the most.