Former ‘Survivor’ contestant appears in court in Ponzi scheme, child pornography case

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4 Fast Facts

  • Former “Survivor” contestant faces charges
  • Michael Skupin appeared during two seasons of the show
  • He’s accused of running a Ponzi scheme and possessing child pornography
  • He appeared in court Monday for a hearing

OAKLAND COUNTY, Mich. – A former “Survivor” contestant appeared in a Michigan court Monday for a pretrial hearing.

Michael Skupin, a two-time “Survivor” contestant, is accused of running a Ponzi scheme and possessing child pornography, according to WXYZ.

Witnesses testified in court Monday, saying they gave Skupin cash in exchange for promises of a big return. One witness gave him $13,000. The witnesses said they didn’t make any money and didn’t get their original investment back.

Investigators looked into the reality TV star’s “Pay It Forward” program in 2013 and later charged him. They also said they found child pornography on his computer after seizing it as part of the investigation.

Skupin denies the charges. The hearing was adjourned until next week, when the child pornography case will be discussed.

He appeared on “Survivor: The Australian Outback” and “Survivor: Philippines.” He was the first person ever medically evacuated from the show after he passed out and fell into a fire during “The Australian Outback.”

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