The lawyer for Billy McFarland, the organizer who achieved viral infamy after "putting together" the disastrous Fyre Festival on the Bahamian island of Great Exuma back in spring of 2017, claims the festival promoter has mental health problems that led to his criminal behavior, Newsday reports.
That attorney, Randall Jackson, wrote a letter to U.S. District Judge Naomi Buchwald saying that his client was diagnosed with alcohol abuse, ADHD, and bipolar disorder, which caused "manic or hypomanic" episodes, "disorganized" behavior, as well as "delusional beliefs of having special and unique talents that will lead to fame and fortune."
"Nothing in this case speaks to any malicious intent on his part," Jackson claimed. "Just a sea of bad judgment, poor decisions, and the type of core instability that can only be explained by mental illness." Due to these supposed conditions, Jackson is asking for leniency when McFarland is sentenced on October 11.
This past March, the 26-year-old McFarland pleaded guilty to scamming investors out of $26 million. As if that wasn't bad enough, while out on bail, McFarland allegedly engineered a new scam that defrauded investors out of $150,000 by hocking tickets he didn't have for major events like the Grammys and Super Bowl. He pleaded guilty to that in July.
According to Newsday, McFarland is facing a minimum of more than 11 years in prison, with probation officials recommending eight.