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Survivor's Hatch Found Guilty on Tax Charges

Survivor's Hatch Found Guilty on Tax Charges
Richard Hatch
Stew Milne/AP

01/25/2006 03:00PM

Original Survivor winner Richard Hatch has been found guilty of tax evasion, a Providence, R.I., jury decided on Wednesday after a week of trial testimony and less than a day of deliberation.

The 44-year-old Hatch – remembered best as "the fat, naked guy" from the reality series – faces up to 13 years in prison and a fine of $600,000.

Hatch, who is considered a flight risk because he owns property in Canada, was led out of the courtroom in handcuffs and taken into custody. His conviction stems from his failure to pay the IRS its share of his $1 million winnings from the CBS show.

He was also found guilty of skipping taxes on $327,000 he earned as co-host of a Boston radio show and on another $28,000 in rent on property he owned. The jury, however, acquitted him of seven bank, mail and wire fraud charges.

During the course of the trial, Hatch's lawyer, Michael Minns, said Hatch caught fellow contestants cheating and struck a deal with producers for the show to pay his taxes if he won. But, ultimately, Hatch was never asked about the allegation when he testified.

Minns instead argued that Hatch was the "world's worst bookkeeper" and said his client never meant to do anything wrong.

However, Hatch's former lover, Ralph Magee, testified that Hatch had used his name on tax and financial documents without his consent, the Associated Press reports.

Hatch is scheduled to be sentenced on April 28.

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