A famous local hunting personality whose television shows appeared in many North Country homes was arraigned Jan. 8 on accusations he led paying hunters on illegal waterfowl hunts over baited ponds in October and November 2018 in Jefferson County.

William “Bill” Saiff III, 56, Henderson, was arraigned in federal court in Syracuse after being charged by indictment with three felony counts, according to the Department of Justice.

The charges were announced by United States Attorney Grant C. Jaquith; Ryan Noel, Regional Special Agent in Charge, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Office of Law Enforcement; and Bernard Rivers, Director of Law Enforcement, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation.

If convicted, Saiff faces up to five years in prison on each count, a fine of up to $250,000, and a term of supervised release of up to three years. A defendant’s sentence is imposed by a judge based on the particular statute the defendant is charged with violating, the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other factors.

At the time of these offenses, Saiff was on probation for a previous misdemeanor conviction in federal court in Syracuse in 2017 for guiding illegal waterfowl hunts over bait. Saiff has been charged separately with violating the terms of his probation based upon this new criminal conduct.

The charges in the indictment and in the probation violation petition are merely accusations, the U.S. Attorney’s office notes. The defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

This case is being investigated by U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Office of Law Enforcement, and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, Division of Law Enforcement, and it is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael F. Perry.


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