Richard Hatch, who won $1 million on the first season of the CBS reality show "Survivor," pleaded not guilty to charges that he failed to pay taxes on his winnings and other income. He was released on a $50,000 bond.
Hatch has been charged with tax evasion, filing a false tax return, wire fraud, bank fraud and mail fraud and entered his plea in U.S. District Court in Providence, R.I.
Federal prosecutors announced a 10-count grand jury indictment filed earlier this month against Hatch. He is accused of filing false tax returns for 2000 and 2001 that omitted his income from the CBS show, $327,000 he was paid to co-host a radio show and $28,000 in rent on a property he owns in Newport, R.I. They also say he used donations to his charity to cover personal expenses.
The former corporate trainer said the indictment was retribution for his refusal in March to follow through on a plea deal in which he would have plead guilty to two counts of tax evasion. He could face a maximum of 75 years in prison if found guilty on all charges.Hatch has been restricted to travel in Rhode Island, but will be allowed to go to Houston to consult with his attorneys. A trial could start on or after Nov. 1.
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