(2:15 PM) Dunkirk Man Sentenced To 16 Years In Kidnapping Case

Samuel Saeli

MAYVILLE — Chautauqua County District Attorney Patrick Swanson announced that Samuel Saeli of Dunkirk was sentenced Thursday to 16 years in state prison after he was convicted of kidnapping.

Saeli was convicted on charges of second-degree kidnapping and kidnapping as a sexually motivated felony. He was sentenced in front of Acting Chautauqua County Court Judge Paul B. Wojtaszek. In addition to prison, the Dunkirk man was sentenced to 10 years of post-release supervision.

“Today, the defendant was placed where he cannot pose a threat to any child for the next sixteen years,” Swanson said in a statement. “Justice was served with the sentence the Court handed down.”

Saeli was convicted in June during the fourth day of his retrial. His victim was a 13-year-old boy with autism he abducted from the Fredonia Walmart parking lot in August of 2016.

The boy was located approximately 40 minutes later near Cushing Street in Fredonia.

Last year’s trial of Saeli ended in a hung jury in September.

“First and foremost, I want to thank the Fredonia Police Department, and our local FBI partners for their outstanding work on this case,” Swanson said. “The quick response of every officer involved in this case needs to be commended. This case reminds each and every parent of the dangers that exist in today’s world. It highlights their worst fears. But it also reminds us that there are good guys wearing blue that go to work for us every day to protect our families.” Swanson said, “I cannot say enough about our local law enforcement here in Chautauqua County. Their hard work on this case has resulted in the elimination of a real danger to our society for the next 16 years. My hope is that this man does not have the opportunity to harm one of our children again.”