Fyre Festival’s Billy McFarland faces new fraud and money laundering charges


Billy McFarland, the disgraced businessman behind last year's disastrous Fyre Festival, faces new charges related to a fraudulent ticket scam federal prosecutors say he ran while free on bail.

Fyre Festival was one of the biggest flops in the history of music festivals. McFarland plead guilty to those charges in March.

McFarland will be sentenced on June 21 in the festival fraud.

Each of the three wire fraud charges, as well as the money laundering charge, carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison.

Brendan McDermid / Reuters Billy McFarland (left) sold almost $100,000 worth of fraudulent tickets in the several months since he's been free on bail, according to federal prosecutors. He tricked at least 15 people into buying the nonexistent tickets. The Feds allege that in 2017, McFarland, while out on bail and awaiting the outcome of his previous charges, had employees call the highest earning Fyre festival attendees.

McFarland sent proceeds from the fraudulent sales to other people's accounts in an attempt to hide his connection to the funds, prosecutors said. Far from the luxury accommodations and celebrity-chef-prepared meals promised by its producers -McFarland and rapper Ja Rule - concertgoers were met with flimsy tents, boxed lunches, near-total disorganization and long waits for flights to return to the mainland after airlines began refusing to fly would-be concertgoers to the overcrowded island of Exumas. The festival was anything but the ultra-luxurious event promoted as "the cultural experience of the decade" and touted on social media by Kendall Jenner, Bella Hadid, Emily Ratajkowski and other models and celebrities. He's now facing up to 40 years in prison.

We're told the documentary crew behind Hulu's upcoming Fyre Festival docuseries, being produced by Cinemart, has been following McFarland's hearings.