Fyre Festival founder Billy McFarland who is accused of defrauding investors and attendees out of millions of dollars was sentenced to six years in prison for the disastrous music festival debacle, Vulture reports.
McFarland, 26, was accused of scamming people out of $26 million and selling bogus tickets. Prosecutors wanted him to serve 20 years behind bars.
According to acting Manhattan U.S. Attorney Joon Kim, McFarland “promised a life-changing music festival, but in actuality delivered a disaster.” As MacFarland’s lawyers tried to argue that he has an untreated mental illness and begged for mercy on the sentencing, Judge Naomi Reice Buchwald was unmoved.
“Mr. McFarland is a fraudster and not merely a misguided youngster,” said Judge Buchwald before calling him a “serial fraudster.”
Ja Rule, who partnered with McFarland on the event and helped to promote it, insisted that the debacle was not his fault in an apology issued after reports surfaced that the festival was falling apart at the seams.
Concertgoers were promised a once in a lifetime music festival experience. It was promoted as a high-end music festival set to take place in the Bahamas last April.
Attendees paid up to $12,000 to be a part of the supposed luxurious event only to get there and find a lack of accommodations, FEMA tents, and food service that was so lax, people were served bread, cheese and salad instead of the gourmet meals they were promised. Not a single celebrity act performed at the festival and people were left stranded on the island in the dark.
McFarland even presented one investor with false stock ownership while trying to legitimize the project.
“McFarland allegedly presented fake documents to induce investors to put over a million dollars into his company and the fiasco called the Fyre Festival,” Kim stated previously.