Hatch to Plead Guilty to Tax Evasion

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Richard Hatch, a Rhode Island resident who became a millionaire when he won the first-ever "Survivor" series, has agreed to plead guilty to two counts of tax evasion, for filing false tax returns.

Federal prosecutors charged that Hatch, 43, failed to report his $1.01 million winnings from the CBS show, and did not report another $321,000 he was paid by a Boston radio station.

The penalty could be up to five years in federal prison and a $250,000 fine for each charge. However, as part of the plea agreement filed in federal court, the U.S. Attorney's office said it would recommend a lesser sentence.

Hatch is scheduled to appear in U.S. District Court in Providence on Monday.

The charges were announced Tuesday by the U.S. Attorney's office. The details of the plea agreement appeared in court documents, which were signed last week by Hatch and filed Tuesday.

According to the U.S. Attorney's Office, Survivor Entertainment Group paid Hatch $10,000 in August 2000 for appearing on the final episode of the reality show and $1 million for being declared the show's winner. Prosecutors allege that in November 2002, Hatch filed a false personal income tax return for the 2000 tax year by failing to report the $1.01 million.

Prosecutors also said that Hatch failed to report income he earned during appearances on WQSX-FM in Boston between January and December 2001.

A message left at Hatch's Newport home was not immediately returned.