Billy McFarland, The Man Who Scammed 26 Million Dollars With A Music Festival

Music festivals are a hit with the millennial generation. From Coachella to Lollapalooza, these concerts offer an escape route for those in their 20s to 30s. Fyre Festival, a music festival scheduled to take place on an island in the Bahamas in April 2017, would be the next big thing. But it quickly turned into a disaster.

Fyre Festival was the subject of two hit documentaries on Netflix and Hulu. Both documentaries focus on Billy McFarland, the businessman who planned the event. Where is Billy today? Are you in jail? What was your sentence and how is it paying, in the words of Game Spot, to be a “functional sociopath, compulsive liar, and a smoke salesman”?

Keep reading.

Billy McFarland was sentenced to six years in prison

McFarland is only 29 years old, but he’s gotten into trouble. He was arrested on June 30, 2017, and charged with fraud in Manhattan federal court after defrauding investors and buyers of nearly $ 26 million. In October 2017, McFarland was sentenced to six years in prison by a federal judge.

Today, he is incarcerated at the Otisville Federal Correctional Center in New York.

During his sentencing, McFarland apologized for his actions and said that a “fear of disappointing everyone” is what led him to make mistakes. “I made decisions that have nothing to do with everything my family tried to teach me,” he explained.

In a statement following McFarland’s sentencing, United States Attorney Geoffrey S. Berman of the Southern District of New York said: “Billy McFarland has displayed a disturbing pattern of deception, resulting in investors and clients losing more than $ 26 million in two separate fraud schemes. As he had previously admitted, Billy McFarland failed to deliver on his promises to his investors and clients. Today, McFarland discovered the hard way that empty promises do not lead to jet-setting, champagne and extravagant parties, they lead to federal prison. “

According to NBC, prosecutors pressed for a 15-year prison sentence for McFarland. However, his lawyers asked for leniency in the case, stating that Billy suffered from mental health problems.

Fyre Festival, a scam that cost him dear

In April 2017, hundreds of millennials headed to Great Exumas Island, where they hoped to experience the most exclusive music festival in the world. However, in a matter of minutes, their hopes were met with disappointment and fear. The beaches were full of poor quality tents, the food consisted of a piece of cheese on bread, and there was no infrastructure for the event.

In a November statement to People, McFarland said: “I am very sorry for my collective actions and I will correct the mistakes that I have defrauded my family, friends, associates, associates and the general public with,” he told People. “I have always sought, and dreamed of, achieving incredible things for the common good, but I made many wrong and immature decisions along the way and caused agony. As a result, I have lived in prison every day in pain and will continue to do so until I can make up for some of this damage with work and actions that society deems respectable.

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