Home > NewsRelease > Fyre Festival Con Man Sentenced to 6 Years in Federal Prison
Text
Fyre Festival Con Man Sentenced to 6 Years in Federal Prison
From:
Daniel Wise --  Federal Prison Time Consulting, LLC Daniel Wise -- Federal Prison Time Consulting, LLC
Spokane , WA
Monday, February 04, 2019

 

Fyre Festival Con Man Sentenced to 6 Years in Federal Prison

 

Billy McFarland, disgraced promoter of Fyre music festival, plead guilty to fraud July 2018. He was sentenced to 6 years in prison and is currently located at Otisville FCI, a minimum-security federal prison, located in New York State. "A prison much like resort living, he will basically be playing tennis every day. How did he not get a harsher sentence for the damage he caused? This is one of the cushiest federal prisons that exist." said Dan Wise, of RDAPDan, when asked to comment on the facility.

 

McFarland's partner in the festival, Ja Rule, who has not yet been charged, claims he didn't profit from the festival. He takes zero responsibility for the Fyre catastrophe.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

The failed festival was to take place at Norman's Cay, a small island in the Bahamas. Previously used as a drug smuggling hub, but most famous for rumors of being once owned by Pablo Escobar. Although the island was never actually owned by Escobar, his associate, Carlos Ledher did own an estate, plus a large percentage of Norman's Cay.

 
 
 
 
Fyre founders Ja Rule and Billy MacFarland. Courtesy of Netflix.
 

After Lehder's arrest, Bohemian officials took over Norman Cay and wanted to rebrand the island as something other than a drug location. Despite their request for Fyre Media not to mention Escobar in the festival advertisements, the promotional video proudly advertised his previous ownership. As if it were a selling point. Consequently, a few months before the festival's kick off, the Fyre team was left without a location.

 
In a last-minute attempt to provide a venue, McFarland and his team found Great Exuma. A not-so-private island, but still in the Bahamas. Instead of being honest about the new location's lack of privacy, the team represented the venue as a private island. They Photoshopped the map of the festival's site assuming the patrons would never go beyond the designated area of the festival.
 

Dan Wise of RDAPDan commented, "The islanders he scammed out of work with no pay caused them to flee the area in order to be secure. In my opinion, McFarland should have received a harsher sentence, one more in line with the amount of damage he caused. McFarland is at one of the easiest federal prison camps that exist. Otisville FCI is where many wealthy white-collar individuals end up serving time. Currently, Jersey Shore's Mike "The Situation" Sorrentino is there, as well. Michael Cohen is on his way to his prison sentence there. It's not a rough place. Otisville FCI was voted as one of the top 10 cushiest prisons in the United States. It is likely that he will re-offend due to the very light sentence. His days will likely be spent relaxing in the facility where he is housed. Sports, classes, eating decent food, music room and billiards. The people whose lives he destroyed are not receiving justice."

 

With only 45 days to build what was promised for the festival at the new site, they hired a large number of local islanders to help with catering and construction. None of them were ever paid for their efforts. When asked his opinion on the matter, Dan Wise of RDAPDAN said, "He's (McFarland) a snake oil salesman! People like Billy McFarland and Ja Rule never could have created such a massive con without the naive nature of both famous influencers and the people that desire to be part of such a social experience. If it sounds too good to be true, it is. Everyone was blinded by fake fame and the possibility of rubbing elbows with famous people that would otherwise never give them a second look."

 
Daniel Wise
Spokane, WA
509-434-4695
Other experts on these topics