Contact Us

Fyre Festival organizer, who spent $150K on a yacht for Blink-182, pleads guilty to wire fraud

Fyre Festival organizer Billy McFarland
Fyre Festival organizer Billy McFarland

Billy McFarland, the organizer behind the disaster that was last year’s supposedly luxe, beachside Fyre Festival, has plead guilty to two counts of wire fraud charges in federal court in Manhattan on Tuesday (3/6). Bloomberg reports that McFarland, 26, told U.S. District Judge Naomi Reice Buchwald that he had “grossly underestimated the resources that would be necessary to hold an event of this magnitude,” adding “My intention and effort was directed to organizing a legitimate festival. In an attempt to raise what I thought were needed funds, I lied to investors about various aspects of Fyre Media and my personal finances.”

The Fyre Festival, which was to have happened last April, was co-organized by McFarland and rapper Ja Rule and promised to be a “cultural moment created from a blend of music, art and food” with performances from Blink-182, Disclosure, Migos, Rae Sremmurd, Skepta, Pusha-T. Attendees for this destination festival were instead met with chaos, no luggage and cold cheese sandwiches. Blink-182 pulled out at the 11th hour but Page Six reports that in bank documents they obtained, McFarland had spent over $150,000 of the fest’s budget on a yacht for the pop punk vets. Page Six also reports he spent $18,208 on towels and $260,000 on carpet for the “tent city” (which itself cost them nearly half a million dollars).

McFarland could face eight to 10 years in prison and up to $300,000 in fines when he’s sentenced in June.

Check It Out

Leave a Comment

It appears that you already have an account created within our VIP network of sites on . To keep your personal information safe, we need to verify that it's really you. To activate your account, please confirm your password. When you have confirmed your password, you will be able to log in through Facebook on both sites.

Forgot your password?

It appears that you already have an account on this site associated with . To connect your existing account just click on the account activation button below. You will maintain your existing VIP profile. After you do this, you will be able to always log in to using your original account information.

Please fill out the information below to help us provide you a better experience.

(Forgot your password?)

Not a member? Sign up here

Sign up for BrooklynVegan quickly by connecting your Facebook account. It's just as secure and no password to remember!