Federal grand jury indicts local hunting guide

Federal grand jury indicts local hunting guide

SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WWNY) - A well-known north country hunting guide is in trouble with the federal government again.

A grand jury indicted Bill Saiff III, who owned and operated Seaway Waterfowl Professionals, on three counts of sale of wildlife in violation of federal law, a violation of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act.

According to the indictment, Saiff charged customers more than $350 per hunt to guide them "to baited ponds for the illegal taking of migratory birds."

The acts allegedly occurred on October 20, November 5 and November 10, 2018.

The indictment comes after Saiff pleaded guilty in 2017 to guiding waterfowl hunts over baited ponds, which led to the killing of protected birds, a violation of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act.

Saiff, who hosted the nationally televised public television hunting and shooting sports program 'Cabin Country,' admitted that on October 27, 2015, he guided a hunting party over a baited pond in the town of Cape Vincent. Saiff had previously installed an underwater trough at the pond to hold bait.

As part of his guilty plea, the Henderson man admitted that prior to the hunt, he stocked the trough with corn to attract waterfowl to the pond.

Investigators found the hidden trough stocked with corn one day prior to the hunt.

Before they were approached by investigators who stopped the hunt, Saiff’s hunting party shot and killed several protected waterfowl.

Saiff also admitted that on October 31, 2015, he guided a hunting party over a baited pond in the town of Rodman.

He acknowledged that he placed approximately 50 pounds of corn along the shoreline of the pond less than ten days prior to that hunt.

Saiff’s hunting party killed several protected birds, including geese and ducks, before a law enforcement officer intervened and seized the dead waterfowl.

He was sentenced to probation and fined.

As part of his punishment, he was also banned from hunting activities until January 1, 2019. However, officials said Saiff didn't honor that probationary period.

Saiff was once again accused of being involved in bird bating and guided hunting activities in 2018, but no further court documents were filed in the case until this latest indictment.

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