Rapper Ja Rule has been dropped as a defendant in the class action lawsuit against organizers of the notorious Fyre Festival.
Also dropped from the $100 million lawsuit was Grant Margolin, who was the chief marketing officer of the luxury Bahamas music festival that infamously never happened.
Judge P. Kevin Castel, who is handling the suit, actually dismissed all claims against Margolin and Ja rule, whose real name is Jeffrey Atkins, in July of this year. But the plaintiffs, led by the law firm of Geragos & Geragos, appealed this decision.
They said that new evidence had since come forth that demonstrated that both men encouraged people to attend the event despite knowing that it would never take place. This evidence included a tweet from Ja Rule prior to the event as well as information uncovered by recent Hulu and Netflix documentaries about the festival: Fyre Fraud and Fyre: The Greatest Party That Never Happened.
But the judge has denied the plaintiff’s appeal.
This is because they could not prove that JaRule’s tweet actually convinced anyone to buy tickets to the festival. “This Court rejected plaintiffs’ conclusory assertions that they relied on defendants’ representations about the Festival as insufficient to state a claim for fraud,” Judge Castel said. “In the case of Atkins, plaintiffs alleged an actionable false statement, but failed to allege that they acted in reliance thereon.”
The judge also indicated that any information that came to light as a result of the documentaries could not be considered “new evidence,” as both films had been publicly available six months prior to his original dismissal.
Ryan Hayden Smith, who is the lawyer representing Ja Rule in this case told Billboard, “This ruling is nothing short of a total vindication of Mr. Atkins.”
The original class action lawsuit against Billy McFarland, who is the now-jailed founder of the Fyre Festival, is still ongoing.