It’s hard to deny that one the most memorable moments the year in music-related headlines was the viral downfall in the Bahamas, a first year event that was marketed as a luxury festival held on a private island previously owned by Pablo Escobar to the elite the world (advertised by Instagram famous models like Kendall Jenner and Emily Ratajkowski) that turned out to be a total sham when ticket buyers showed up to tents on a dirt patch near a chain hotel and bread and cheese instead luxury catering and paradisal suites.
, a co-organizer Fyre Festival alongside celebrity rapper Ja Rule, was arrested on Friday last week in his Manhattan home, charged with wire fraud for allegedly deceiving investors to finance his company Fyre Media, which was behind the festival.
“A criminal complaint unsealed on Friday detailed the case, which relies heavily on misrepresentations financial information to people who invested in Fyre Media — whose main business was a website that let people book celebrities for special events,” the New York Times states. “According to the complaint, sworn to by Brandon Racz, a special agent with the F.B.I., at least two people invested about $1.2 million in the two companies, and in communications with these investors in 2016 and 2017, Mr. McFarland repeatedly overstated Fyre Media’s revenue from bookings and his own wealth.”
McFarland was quickly placed in the hot seat after the event played out and faced numerous , but despite the backlash, attempted to mend the situation by in lieu refunds.
“As alleged, William McFarland promised a ‘life changing’ music festival but in actuality delivered a disaster,” added Joon Kim, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District New York Acting Manhattan U.S. Attorney. “McFarland allegedly presented fake documents to induce investors to put over a million dollars into his company and the fiasco called the Fyre Festival. Thanks to the investigative efforts the FBI, McFarland will now have to answer for his crimes.”