Fyre Festival founder ordered to pay two attendees $5 million
More than a year after the train wreck that was Fyre Festival, Seth Crossno and co-plaintiff Mark Thompson have won their lawsuit against the disastrous event’s founder, Billy McFarland. The blogger who chronicled the vastly underdelivered Bahamian event, Crossno, and Thompson are the first festival victims to win a suit against McFarland. Their attorney Stacy Miller told Vice News, “I think there’s going to be a lot of people looking to collect, but we’ll be first.” Miller has delivered, to the tune of $5 million.
Together, the two men paid $13,000 for travel, accommodations, and luxury VIP passes. As it goes, Crossno and Thompson ended up on a storm-ridden island with disheveled tents, sandwich lunches with less dignity than prison food, and none of the “glamorous” amenities that lured high-rolling festival goers in from all over the world. According to Miller, each plaintiff was awarded $1.5 million in compensatory damages for hotels, flight, mental anguish, pain, and suffering in addition to $1 million in punitive damages.
The win came after McFarland failed to show up to court for over a year, piling on his current jail sentencing stemming from two counts of wire fraud. These new charges were brought against Ja Rule‘s “tech buddy” since the Fyre Festival incident, alleging he was still scamming people while out on bail. Old habits don’t die quick enough, it seems.
As to whether or not McFarland will be able to pay the plaintiffs, Miller seems optimistic. Despite failing to pay attorneys and crisis management groups for their services, a recent motion filed by federal prosecutors in McFarland’s criminal case suggests he has cash tucked away and makes $40,000 per month from freelance work.
Vice News also reported Crossno recently applied for the expired Fyre trademark, working on a new podcast called “Dumpster Fyre,” where he will discuss his hellish experience in depth.