A well-known guide and TV personality was handed a $5,000 fine yesterday in a federal court based on charges for leading illegal waterfowl hunts for profit.
William Saiff III, otherwise known as Bill Saiff, was ordered to pay the fine as well as pay upwards of $10,000 in charitable donations and was also ordered to publish half page ads in both the Watertown Daily Times and New York Outdoors News, apologizing for his actions.
Handed down by United States Magistrate Judge Therese Wiley Dancks and part of a plea bargain and guilty plea by Saiff in late May, Saiff became embroiled in the case after investigators with both the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and New York’s Department of Environmental Conservation found illegal baiting practices in a pond Saiff frequented.
What they uncovered was a hidden underwater trough Saiff had filled with corn to attract waterfowl in the area. Prior to investigators being able to stop the hunt, Saiff and his party were said to have shot a number of protected waterfowl.
“Saiff also admitted that on October 31, 2015, he guided a hunting party over a baited pond in the Town of Rodman in Jefferson County. Saiff 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,” according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
In addition to the fines prescribed, Saiff is also subject to a period of probation. According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office, the charges Saiff pleaded guilty to of violating the Migratory Bird Treaty Act carry a maximum sentence of $100,000 and one year in prison.
h/t: New York Upstate