Schumer's Press Secretary Makes Cameo in Fyre Festival Documentary With Fraudster

Angelo Roefaro to convicted felon: 'Try to keep me out of your stuff'

Angelo Roefaro in 'The Great Party That Never Happened' / Twitter Screenshot
January 22, 2019

Angelo Roefaro, the press secretary for Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D., N.Y.), makes a cameo in a newly released documentary about the disastrous Fyre music festival. The festival's organizer is now serving a six-year sentence for defrauding attendees and investors out of millions of dollars.

The Netflix original documentary, "FYRE: The Great Party That Never Happened," sheds light on what went on behind the scenes and how mastermind Billy McFarland scammed attendees into paying thousands of dollars apiece to take chartered planes to a private island in the Bahamas. They were expecting to hear performances by Blink-182 and other acts, but it turned out to be "a desolate, half-built wasteland of tents and soggy mattresses with minimal food and no celebrities in attendance," according to CNN.

Roefaro makes an appearance near the end of the documentary, shortly after McFarland was charged with wire fraud connected with the failed music festival and released on $300,000 bail. At the time, McFarland and others were in the process of planning another scam, called "NYC VIP Access."

Roefaro is seen walking into McFarland's penthouse hotel room with his backpack and sitting down with him. One of the videographers says offscreen that he doesn't know whether "Angelo" is McFarland's "PR guy" but says he knows he is "well-connected."

The documentary videographer captures Roefaro telling McFarland, "Just try to keep me out of your stuff, because I can't say anything." McFarland laughs in response and tells Roefaro, "We're not saying anything bad. You can talk. You can give me advice."

Roefaro did not return a request for comment on his appearance in the documentary by press time.

One of the videographers then reflects on a conversation he had with McFarland, recalling how he confidently said he was "not going to jail."  However, he was sentenced to six years in prison last October for fraud, NBC News reported at the time.

"Billy McFarland has shown a disturbing pattern of deception, which resulted in investors and customers losing over $26 million in two separate fraud schemes," U.S. Attorney Geoffrey S. Berman of the Southern District of New York said in a statement. "As he had previously admitted, Billy McFarland did not deliver on his promises to his investors and customers. Today, McFarland found out the hard way that empty promises don’t lead to jet-setting, champagne, and extravagant parties — they lead to federal prison."

Published under: Chuck Schumer , Fraud