Two attendees the disaster that was last year’s Fyre Festival have been award $5 million in damages in the first in what may be many lawsuits to come.
According to Vice News, two North Carolina concertgoers, Seth Crossno and Mark Thompson, won in a suit filed against festival under Billy MacFarland. Ja Rule, who was MacFarland’s partner was initially named in the lawsuit, but according to the publications, the co-plaintiffs decided to spare the rapper after they met a separate agreement.
“We worked with him] and his attorney and amicably decided to move on to other business matters,” says Crossno.
In the original 47-page lawsuit filed last year, Crossno and Thompson requested $25,000, but the presiding judge decided on granting the men $1.5 million in compensatory damages and an additional $ 1 million in punitive damages each. According to their attorney Stacy Miller, the $1.5 million covered things from hotels and flights to mental anguish, pain and suffering. Both Crossno and Thompson spent $13,000 on their package to what was promised to be a luxurious festival package that included a four-bedroom villa. However, when the duo arrived in the Bahamas, like all other attendees, they were met with a FEMA-like setup with minimal food and camping tents on an abandoned portion the archipelago. They soon made a run for the airport when they noticed a Bahamian native “walking around and near the site with a machine gun.”
“We feel very satisfied,” Miller said. “We asked the court to send a message to those who defraud North Carolina consumers, and we believe he did.”
All the while, it’s not even clear if MacFarland has that amount money to cough up in the first place. Over the series months, he’s lost multiple attorneys and crisis management teams over non-payment and is currently awaiting a sentencing hearing next month for two counts wire fraud and is also facing a new charge for scamming through company called NYC VIP Access.