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Hunting show host charged with poaching in Alaska

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ANCHORAGE, Alaska » The host of the Sportsman Channel hunting show "The Syndicate" was charged Monday with poaching in northwest Alaska.

U.S. Attorney Karen Loeffler said grizzly bears, moose, caribou and Dall sheep were illegally killed in the Noatak National Preserve, and some of the illegal kills ended up on the cable television show.

Prosecutors charged a host of the show, Clark W. Dixon, 41, of Hazelhurst, Mississippi, with two felony violations of the Lacey Act.

Dixon is charged with taking a grizzly bear for a fee in 2010 without being a licensed and registered big game hunting guide. He’s also charged with conducting an illegal outfitting operation since 2009.

Two production companies and another individual were cited for filming and airing video without a commercial permit.

Sportsman Channel spokesman Tom Caraccioli says the channel has no comment.

Several personalities associated with Alaska-based reality or outdoors television shows have had brushes with the law, including former rock star and gun rights advocate Ted Nugent.

In 2012, Nugent paid a $10,000 fine and was placed on two years’ probation for transporting a black bear he illegally killed. The kill occurred in 2009 during a bow hunt that had been filmed for Nugent’s Outdoor channel television show "Spirit of the Wild."

Another star, former Miami Dolphins running back Larry Csonka, was fined $5,000 in 2006 for filming his "North to Alaska" cable television outdoor show on National Forest Service land without obtaining a special use permit.

More recently, Jim West, a hunting guide who appeared on Animal Planet’s "Wild West Alaska," pleaded guilty last year to four misdemeanor hunting or guiding violations.

And the family associated with the Discovery Channel’s "Alaskan Bush People" face residency problems on two fronts. The state has cited the six family members for illegally applying for the yearly oil check residents receive once they meet certain requirements, such as living in the state for a certain amount of time each year. The family members also face minor citations for not meeting residency requirements for resident hunting and fishing licenses.

AP Television Writer Lynn Elber in Los Angeles contributed to this report.

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