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Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

Judge awards 2 Fyre Fest attendees $5 million in damages

Illustration for article titled Judge awards 2 Fyre Fest attendees $5 million in damages
Photo: LARS HEDELIN/AFP (Getty Images)

Blissfully ignoring the legally-verified opinion that these particular guys probably shouldn’t be allowed all that much in the way of disposable income, a North Carolina judge has awarded $5 million in damages to attendees of last year’s disastrous Fyre Fest, money we’re all just going to have to cross our fingers won’t end up in the pockets of Big Brooklyn Bridge or Magical Beans.

This is per Vice, which reports that would-be Ja Rule buddies Seth Crossno and Mark Thompson have both been awarded $1.5 million in compensatory damages for the pain and suffering they experienced thanks to the festival’s co-founder, fraud convictee Billy McFarland, and another $1 million each in punitive damages against him. (Ja Rule, who co-founded the festival with McFarland, and who served as its public face, appears to have been quietly let off the hook in a separate agreement.)

Fyre Festival was the social media sensation of 2017—because pain is a sensation, right?—promising attendees, who paid tens of thousands of dollars in travel and ticket fees, a lavish Bahamas adventure in the lap of luxury, and instead stranding them in a rain-swept tent city with nothing but the twin tastes of hot dogs and self-reflection to fill their stomachs. McFarland—who pleaded guilty earlier this year to falsifying documents used to lure in investors to his companies—has been sued by a number of people he hoodwinked into attending for failing to deliver on basically any of the promises the high-class festival made. (Meanwhile, the EPA investigation into his irresponsible pumping of dangerous levels of schadenfreude into the internet is still undergoing review.)


Despite the millions of dollars’ worth of damage that Crossno experienced during his single day-stint at the fest, he appears to be doing okay at the moment, rising to social media prominence by live-tweeting the disastrous event. (He has a podcast, called “Dumpster Fyre,” apparently in the works.) Meanwhile, it’s extremely unclear whether the duo’s legal team will ever be able to actually extract the money owed to them from McFarland, who’s repeatedly claimed that he’s broke, although the pair’s attorneys have suggested they have a strategy in mind to get the cash.

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