Fyre Festival founder Billy McFarland arrested for new ticket-selling scam

Fyre Festival founder Billy McFarland, who pleaded guilty to two counts wire fraud in March, was charged Tuesday with running a fraudulent ticket-selling scam while he was out on bail and faces new charges, federal prosecutors told the New York Times on Tuesday.

McFarland was rearrested Tuesday and charged with earning $100,000 by selling fake tickets to events including the Coachella Festival and the Met Gala through NYC VIP Access, a company he controlled, and attempted to hide his involvement by sending sale proceeds to other people’s bank accounts, according to multiple news reports.

See photos of repeated scammer Billy McFarland:

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Fyre Festival scammer Billy McFarland
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Fyre Festival scammer Billy McFarland
William 'Billy' McFarland, organizer of the Fyre Festival, exits the U.S. Federal Court in Manhattan following his presentment on wire fraud charges in New York City, U.S., July 1, 2017. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid
William 'Billy' McFarland, organizer of the Fyre Festival, exits the U.S. Federal Court in Manhattan, with his lawyer Sabrina Shroff, following his presentment on wire fraud charges in New York City, U.S., July 1, 2017. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid
William 'Billy' McFarland, organizer of the Fyre Festival, exits the U.S. Federal Court in Manhattan following his presentment on wire fraud charges in New York City, U.S., July 1, 2017. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid
WATER MILL, NY - JULY 30: Billy McFarland and Carol Mac attend The 23rd Annual Watermill Center Summer Benefit & Auction at The Watermill Center on July 30, 2016 in Water Mill, NY. (Photo by Patrick McMullan/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - DECEMBER 14: (L-R) Matthew Assante, Waka Flocka, Billy McFarland and Ja Rule attend 'Whisper Wednesdays' at PHD Terrace Dream Midtown on December 14, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Chance Yeh/Getty Images)
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The charges add third count of wire fraud onto the existing two counts, as well as a count of money laundering. Each of the four counts carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison, although, on the initial charges at least, he was realistically looking at a much lighter sentence.

Prosecutors said McFarland, 26, began running the scheme late last year, several months after his arrest for defrauding Fyre investors out of $26 million. They also allege that he may have committed bank fraud and identity theft in the past few months.

“William McFarland, already awaiting sentencing for a prior fraud scheme, allegedly continued to conduct criminal business as usual,” United States Attorney Geoffrey Berman said in a statement.

See photos and firsthand accounts from the massive Fyre Festival scam:

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Pictures and firsthand accounts from Fyre Festival
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Pictures and firsthand accounts from Fyre Festival
Newly surfaced emails show the Fyre Festival organizers were notified of urgent concerns weeks before the festival. https://t.co/ydbUTBbmNL
Here's the "culinary experience" we got for our artists pass at Fyre Festival. https://t.co/Kk9q9uvkX0
The dinner that @fyrefestival promised us was catered by Steven Starr is literally bread, cheese, and salad with dr… https://t.co/GjBxQygxV9
FBI to investigate Fyre Festival, report says https://t.co/cxBvmq9GwR https://t.co/xtOzfD7w8P
One of the kitchens at Fyre Festival. #fyre #fyrefest #fyrefestival https://t.co/gQIpwxrw6S
A view of the luxury food court with some luxury school bus transportation at Fyre Festival. #fyre #fyrefestival https://t.co/XL3PtRw8q0
These are the secure lockers at Fyre Fest. They forgot to tell us we needed locks. #fyrefestival #fyrefest https://t.co/Tqyjqbg2Gy
Food court so lit rn at Fyre Fest. #fyrefestival #fyre https://t.co/sxEX4OduTR
Luxury trash receptacles at the luxury bar (with no beer). No shoes, no shirt, pajama pants, no problem.… https://t.co/aBWohANKnb
The infrastructure was nonexistent, and the festival staff either a skeleton crew or MIA. https://t.co/8Gh6NevsFI
@FyreFraud Just a reminder of what "The Duo" was originally sold as https://t.co/gKz90zNBvu
UPDATE: they are having us sign papers for full refunds. They are just pieces of computer paper but I mean...refunds https://t.co/oNa8EIojl1
Internal emails appear to show there were many warning signs ahead of Fyre Festival. Billy McFarland & Ja Rule now… https://t.co/8nsRzaczKN
The line of ex Fyre Festers at the Exuma International Airport. Yes that's throw up. #fyre #fyrefestival https://t.co/jSZHg0F0Kn
Inside the Fyre Festival fiasco: the reporters who wrote our exposé tell their stories on Popcast https://t.co/fUvLFd97Dy
Here are a few pics of the luxury cuisine options. The food on the right was pretty good. #fyrefestival https://t.co/aJkxtypQND
The luxury stage was so lit. Sadly, there was no beer at the luxury bar. They didn't run out. They never had any to… https://t.co/gw6l49sPKo
Luggage pickup was great. They brought the bags in and guests got to unload them for fun. In the dark. It built cha… https://t.co/AaRS25p3JY
They finally opened the doors to let some air in. The guy is ok. #fyrefestival https://t.co/D7j5qtzsGi
Also, we found a notebook from one of the Fyre Fest planners on the ground. It is amazing. #fyrefestival #fyre https://t.co/jFib0nO2RW
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He is scheduled to be sentenced on his original charges next week. An attorney for McFarland did not immediately respond to Variety’s request for comment.

The heavily hyped Fyre Festival was to be a “luxury concert” — taking place on a small island in the Bahamas and featuring Blink-182, Migos and Disclosure — but collapsed on in a mess of disorganization on April 29 before it had even started. Far from the luxury accommodations and celebrity-chef-prepared meals promised by its producers —McFarland and rapper Ja Rule — concertgoers were met with flimsy tents, boxed lunches, near-total disorganization and long waits for flights to return to the mainland after airlines began refusing to fly would-be concertgoers to the overcrowded island of Exumas.

One production professional briefly associated with the festival told Variety the event was marked by “incompetence on an almost inconceivable scale.”

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