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Fyre Festival attendees to get £5,000 compensation four years after disastrous event

Lizzie Edmonds
·2-min read
<p>Ja Rule and Billy McFarland, the founders of Fyre</p> (Netflix)

Ja Rule and Billy McFarland, the founders of Fyre

(Netflix)

Fyre Festival attendees may finally receive compensation four years after the disastrous event.

A class-action settlement worth $2 million (£1.4 million) between the festival’s organisers and 277 ticket holders has been reached in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court, New York, People reports.

The final compensation amount is still subject to approval but currently it is thought each ticket holder would get about $7,200 (£5,200) back.

The festival was founded by entrepreneur Billy McFarland and pop star Ja Rule.

Music fans spent about $1,595 (£1,156) for a luxury weekend on the island of Great Exuma, in the Bahamas, while enjoying performances from Blink-182 and other top artists.

Models and influencers including Kendall Jenner and Bella Hadid were involved in the pre-event marketing.

However the reality was nothing short of a disaster - with ticket-holders forced to stay in flimsy tents and given cheese sandwiches as snacks.

Those trying to get home spent hours sleeping in the island’s small airport.

Many artists pulled out ahead of the festival.

The Fyre Festival disaster was documented in shows by Netflix and Hulu.

Ben Meiselas, the lead lawyer representing the ticket holders, told People he was glad to see “justice.”

“Billy [McFarland] went to jail, ticket holders can get some money back, and some great documentaries were made,” he said.

“Now that’s what I call justice.”

Ms Meiselas also said that as there are a number of creditors involved, each ticketholder may not receive the full payout but “there will be monetary relief in some form or fashion pending approval.”

Fyre Festival’s lawyers have been contacted for comment.

McFarland, is currently serving a six-year prison sentence after he pleaded guilty in March 2018 to two counts of wire fraud.

McFarland, the founder and CEO of Fyre Media, was issued a $25million (£18 million) fine.

The now infamous cheese sandwichesNetflix
The now infamous cheese sandwichesNetflix

It is thought he took around $26 million (£18.9 million) from about 80 investors prior to the event.

He and co-founder Ja Rule have faced dozens of lawsuits following the festival.

In 2019, Ja Rule was dismissed from a $100m (£72 million) class-action lawsuit filed by Fyre Festival attendees and was therefore cleared of any wrongdoing.

The rapper, whose real name is Jeffrey Atkins, repeatedly advertised the festival on his social media pages before the event took place.

In November 2019, New York City judge P Kevin Castel ruled plaintiffs were unable to prove Ja Rule’s social media promotion of the event led to their ticket purchases.

“This ruling is nothing short of a total vindication of Mr Atkins,” Ja Rule’s lawyer, Ryan Hayden Smith, said at the time.

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