Donald Trump May Try to Get Richard Hatch Freed Early

Richard Hatch, who won a million dollars on Survivor and then went to jail for three years for failing to pay taxes on it, is back in prison. The judge last week revoked his supervised release because he still hasn't amended his returns and made payments. The judge imposed a new 9 month sentence.

Hatch is now a contestant on Donald Trump's Celebrity Apprentice. The show just aired the second episode, but wrapped up filming a while ago. He surrendered yesterday to the U.S. Marshals to start serving his new sentence.

Now along comes Donald Trump and says he may be willing to help Hatch. Does Trump really think if he pays Hatch's tax debt the judge or Bureau of Prisons will let him out of jail?

Trump says, "If he makes it to the finals – and I'm not saying he is – I'm sure we can get him time off for good behavior."


There is no good time on a 9 month sentence. Federal good time doesn't kick in until after you've done a year.

And this wasn't a close case for the judge. Hatch faced between three and nine months on the violation. The Government asked for six months and the Judge imposed nine, telling Hatch:

“This isn’t a complicated matter as much as you tried to complicate it,” the judge said. “As far as I can tell, you’ve made no effort to put any money into the government’s coffers.”

... the judge called Hatch’s non-compliance with his original sentence “very serious” and said that delays in his settling with the IRS are “just an effort to avoid the cold hard reality that the jury convicted you of not paying taxes.”

Donald Trump is reportedly considering a bid for the Republican nomination for President. Can he really be that clueless to think he can buy Hatch's way out of prison? And could he get any more opportunistic than to say he'd consider paying Hatch's tax debt if Hatch makes it to the finals on Celebrity Apprentice? Meaning if Hatch goes earlier, it's ok to leave him under the bus because ratings won't be affected?

Trump's sister is a federal appeals court judge in New Jersey. You'd think he'd know better. It's a little scary that he doesn't, considering his new political aspirations.

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    The message here is possibly.... (none / 0) (#1)
    by EL seattle on Tue Mar 15, 2011 at 03:01:48 AM EST
    ... Don't mess with David Cassidy.  

    Oh man! (none / 0) (#4)
    by TeresaInSnow2 on Tue Mar 15, 2011 at 11:22:55 AM EST
    David Cassidy is on the show?  I'll have to watch.

    Apparently (none / 0) (#6)
    by sj on Tue Mar 15, 2011 at 12:55:50 PM EST
    ... you're too late.

    Priorities (none / 0) (#2)
    by getoffamycloud10 on Tue Mar 15, 2011 at 09:49:35 AM EST
    Well, at least he's got his priorities in place. No wonder gops consider him presidential material. He's every bit as presidential as newt, palin, bachmann,...

    Actually, he's probably got a better grasp of American History, geography than they do.

    Because a silly thing (none / 0) (#3)
    by sj on Tue Mar 15, 2011 at 11:20:35 AM EST
    like federal jail time can't possibly "trump" entertainment.  I mean the former is just legal stuff, the latter involves money.  And money always wins, right?


    I wish... (none / 0) (#8)
    by kdog on Tue Mar 15, 2011 at 05:07:24 PM EST
    something trumped jailtime...but money is one of the reasons, if not the reason, we hand out so much jailtime...it's a business like everything else.  What we've got here is dueling business interests...entertainment vs. prison industrial complex.

    If reality tv does trump jailtime, can we get a reality show starring the non-violent and currently incarcerated instead of D-list "celebs" with tax trouble?

    Say this for Mr. Hatch, he might be the only one here who isn't guilty of being an accessory to the mistreatment of Bradley Manning:)


    You know (none / 0) (#10)
    by sj on Wed Mar 16, 2011 at 02:46:17 AM EST
    I agree with you on pretty much everything you say here.  What pi$$ed me off about his attitude was how casually he assumed that he could just openly and blatantly buy the "justice" he wanted for his television show.

    Donald Trump's "hair" alone... (none / 0) (#5)
    by Dadler on Tue Mar 15, 2011 at 12:00:05 PM EST
    ...is an impeachable offense. That pine-straw combover is more disturbing that great-granny's bunion'd feet.

    On that basis alone, Hatch should refuse his help.

    Let him out if he pays his back taxes? (none / 0) (#9)
    by beefeater on Tue Mar 15, 2011 at 07:08:51 PM EST
    He's not being considered for Secretary of the Treasury like Timothy Geithner or anything, come on. I don't think he's ever even worked for Goldman Sucks.