PopWatch takes no pleasure in noting that inaugural Survivor winner Richard Hatch earned a longer-than-expected sentence for failing to pay income taxes on his prize money; nor will we resort to easy jokes that 51 months behind bars should be a snap for someone who did two stints marooned in a remote location with meager rations, cramped quarters, and only a bunch of backstabbers for company.

But we will note Hatch’s denial on Tuesday that he perjured himself during his trial, saying, ”I believe I’ve been completely truthful and completely forthcoming throughout the entire process.” This claim of disarming straightforwardness echoed, of course, the final plea Hatch made before the jury vote that handed him his Survivor victory.

To which, in our heads at least, U.S. District Judge Ernest Torres replied: ”Rhode Island is pretty much full of only two things — snakes and rats. I feel we owe it to Rhode Island’s spirits that we have learned to come to know, to let it be in the end the way Mother Nature intended it to be…for the snake to eat the rat.” And that was that.

addCredit(“Richard Hatch: Lawrence Lucier/”)