What Is Schumer’s Press Secretary, Utica’s Angelo Roefaro Doing In The Fyre Festival Netflix Documentary?
A trending documentary on Netflix, The Best Party that Never Happened, that's unraveling the fraudulent Fyre Festival disaster includes Utica native Angelo Roefaro, who's currently U.S. Senator Chuck Schumer's Press Secretary.
Roefaro, the nephew and former Chief of Staff for former Utica Mayor Dave Roefaro took a job with Senator Chuck Schumer in 2011. He was later named Schumer's Press Secretary, a job he currently holds today. At the end of the documentary, Roefaro turns up in Billy McFarland's penthouse after the Fyre Festival disaster.
"There was a guy named Angelo and I don't know if it was Billy's PR guy; but, I know that
this guy was very connected," a witness described. Roefaro was then seen on a laptop computer and then subtitles picked up his communication, "Just try and keep me out of your stuff, because my," said Roefaro. "I'm not saying anything." That's where the conversation ended in the documentary; but, a lower third graphic identified him as Sen. Chuck Schumer's aid.
"We were friends. I met him at a networking event and we got along," Roefaro told WIBX on Wednesday. "That night, as a result of a TV show or movie being filmed in his apartment, he had a very nice complimentary penthouse hotel room near my own apartment and invited me over to check it out," he said. Roefaro added that he had no idea they were filming anything and he was completely surprised. He said of the people at the penthouse, he only knew McFarland.
The Netflix documentary tracks the failed Fyre Festival, a luxurious music festival scheduled to take place on the Bahamian island of Great Exuma over two weekends in April and May 2017. The event, a disaster and later declared fraudulent, was supposed to feature luxurious accommodations and A-list music acts. The event was cancelled by authorities after people didn't receive the services and perks they paid for; in fact, there was no housing, plumbing or water.
In July of 2018, McFarland was convicted of fraud and was later sentenced in October to six years in jail. He was taken into custody after sentencing and told the judge he was sorry. He said 'fear of letting everybody down' drove him to make mistakes, according to NBC news. He was ordered to forfeit $26 million, the same amount celebrities and investors lent him to carry out the festival in the Spring of 2017.
Did Angelo Roefaro use his connections in government to assist McFarland with a lesser sentence or do anything to help him avoid jail time? "Absolutely not," said Roefaro. "Not one thing."