Lisa Biron

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Lisa A. Biron
Born 1969 (age 44–45)
Residence Manchester, New Hampshire
Occupation Attorney
Criminal charge
Transportation with intent to engage in criminal sexual activity, possession of child pornography, sexual exploitation of children
Criminal penalty
40 years imprisonment
Criminal status Imprisoned at Federal Correctional Institution, Danbury; projected release date of September 20, 2047
Conviction(s) January 20, 2013

Lisa A. Biron (born 1969) is an attorney from Manchester, New Hampshire, and a convicted child molester and child pornographer. In November 2012, she was indicted on federal charges related to the sexual exploitation of her 14-year-old daughter, including taking her to Canada to have sex with a man there. She was convicted on all charges in a January 2013 trial, and was sentenced that May to 40 years in prison.

Early life and career[edit]

Biron lived in New Hampshire since 1972. She graduated from Milford High School in Milford in 1987.[1] She then spent the next decade battling a drug and alcohol problem; she tallied numerous arrests for driving under the influence and driving with a suspended license. She was also involved in numerous abusive marriages. By the start of the new millennium, however, she had become an evangelical Christian, and graduated from Hesser College with a degree in business in 2001 and was valedictorian of her class. In her valedictory speech, she credited her Christian faith with turning her life around, as well as the birth of her daughter. "When I became pregnant with my daughter, I now had the responsibility for a second life," she said.[1][2]}

Biron was admitted to the New Hampshire and Massachusetts bars in 2008. She eventually became involved with the Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), a network of lawyers aligned with the Christian right. She also served on the board of directors of Mount Zion Christian Schools in Manchester.[1]

Arrest[edit]

On September 29, 2012, Brandon Ore, an 18-year-old from Merrimack, told Manchester police officers that he'd seen child pornography on Biron's laptop computer. Ore had first met Biron in the summer of 2012 when he answered a Craigslist ad placed by "two girls, 18 and 33, looking to party." He moved in with them in July 2012 and had sex with the "18-year-old" on several occasions. However, two months after moving in, he moved back out and went to the police after learning that the two "roommates" were really mother and daughter—and that the "18-year-old" was really a 14-year-old girl.[1][2]

Police obtained a search warrant for Biron's house on October 9. After a forensic search turned up five videos and two pictures of her daughter having sex with an unknown man, Biron was arrested that day and charged with seven counts of possession of child pornography. She was released on $35,000 bond.[1] She was formally arraigned on October 26, and ordered to have no contact with her daughter, have no unsupervised contact with anyone under 18, use her computer only for work and not possess weapons.[3][4] Her daughter was taken into foster care.[2]

The Federal Bureau of Investigation was called in almost immediately, as Manchester police suspected the videos and pictures had been produced out of state.[1] Agents from the FBI, United States Customs Service, United States Border Patrol and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement discovered that Biron had taken her daughter to Niagara Falls, Ontario, on Memorial Day 2012 and coerced her into having sex with a man Biron had met on Craigslist several times over a three-day period.[5][6]

On November 14, a federal grand jury returned a sealed indictment charging Biron with seven federal charges—one count each of transportation with intent to engage in criminal sexual activity and possession of child pornography, and five counts of sexual exploitation of children. Two days later, on November 16, Biron was awaiting a probable cause hearing to determine whether there was enough evidence against her to put her on trial on the state charges when FBI agents entered the courtroom and whisked her to the federal courthouse in Concord. There, she appeared before federal magistrate judge Landya McCafferty and was arraigned on the federal charges. Federal prosecutors told McCafferty that Biron had openly flouted her bond conditions. She had not only placed an ad on Craigslist, but had somehow acquired 200 rounds of ammunition and had been seen having sex and using marijuana, ecstasy and cocaine on several occasions—in some cases around children. She'd also sent a threatening text message to Ore and had asked people to lie to investigators.[4] Combined with other evidence, McCafferty ordered Biron jailed without bond, saying that while she was not a flight risk, "there are no conditions or combination of conditions of release that will reasonably assure the safety of the community."[5] On January 3, 2013, an additional charge of child exploitation was added in a superseding indictment. According to John Kacavas, the United States Attorney for New Hampshire, this charge was based on evidence that Biron had recorded herself having sex with her daughter.[7]

The case attracted some notoriety due to Biron's ties to the ADF. That organization issued a statement distancing itself from Biron, stressing that she was only associated with them and was never an employee.[5]

Trial[edit]

Biron's trial began on January 9, 2013, before federal Judge Paul J. Barbadoro. Kacavas alleged that Biron was a frequent user of marijuana who used her daughter as "an object, a thing."[8] They also presented evidence that Biron plied her daughter with alcohol and drugs to lower her inhibitions[9] and had tried to coach her testimony in court. They also introduced videos of several sexual encounters allegedly recorded by Biron.[6]

Prosecutors called eight witnesses during the two-day trial. The first was Kevin Watson, the man seen in the videos taken in Canada. Watson testified that he'd had cybersex on several occasions with Biron's daughter on Skype before the May meeting in Niagara Falls. In one of three videos, a woman Watson identified as Biron said, "It takes practice, baby. It's not so easy." He also testified that before Biron's daughter lost her virginity, she and Watson smoked marijuana and drank alcohol provided by Biron. As part of a deal with Canadian prosecutors, Watson was granted immunity from prosecution in Canada in exchange for his testimony.[9]

Ore then testified that Biron had recorded at least one sexual encounter between him and her daughter on her phone, and that Biron tried to talk him out of going to the police when he found out that the girl was underage.[9] Both he and Watson testified that they had frequently had sex with Biron while her daughter was watching.[2]

On the trial's second day, the girl's father broke down crying after identifying the voices of both his daughter and Biron on a video Biron had recorded.[4] He was so overcome by emotion that he left the courtroom before the video was played before the jury.[2] The prosecution's final witness was FBI forensic examiner James Scripture, who testified that he'd found numerous pornographic images and videos of Biron's daughter from Biron's laptop and iPhone, and was able to pinpoint the exact dates when they were filmed.[10] Among them, he said, was the video of Biron's daughter having sex with Watson, which was intended as a "keepsake" of her first sexual experience.[11]

Biron's attorney, Jim Moir, called no witnesses, instead claiming that the government could not prove its case beyond a reasonable doubt.[4] The jury began deliberations at noon on January 11, and by 1:15 had found Biron guilty on all charges.[10] She was originally due to be sentenced on April 22, but sentencing was delayed until May 22 so she could complete a psychological evaluation.[12]

On May 22, Barbadoro sentenced Biron to 40 years in prison. He said that Biron had committed "extraordinarily egregious" crimes that did "incalculable" damage to her daughter's well-being. Under sentencing guidelines, Biron faced a minimum of 25 years in prison and a maximum of 100 years. Barbadoro indicated that he considered imposing the 100-year sentence, but opted not to do so in part due to a plea from her daughter. In a recorded statement, the daughter said that Biron was "not the monster she is made out to be" and wanted her to have a second chance. Barbadoro said that given the damage that the daughter has suffered, he needed to be sensitive to the need for her to heal, as well as assure her that she was in no way responsible for her mother's crimes.[4][13][14] The conviction also subjects her to disbarment from the practice of law in both Massachusetts and New Hampshire; in nearly all American jurisdictions, a felony conviction is grounds for disbarment.

Biron, inmate number 12775-049, is presently serving her sentence at Federal Correctional Institution, Danbury, in Danbury, Connecticut. Her earliest possible release date is September 30, 2047, when she will be 77 years old.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f Nadolny, Tricia (2012-10-24). "Manchester lawyer Lisa Biron accused of possessing child pornography". Concord Monitor. Retrieved 2013-01-22. 
  2. ^ a b c d e Tuohy, Lynne (2013-01-11). "Mom convicted of exploitation in graphic NH trial". Associated Press. Retrieved 2013-01-22. 
  3. ^ Nadolny, Tricia (2012-10-27). "Lawyer charged with possessing child porn ordered to give up passport". Concord Monitor. Retrieved 2013-01-22. 
  4. ^ a b c d e Nadolny, Tricia (2012-11-17). "Manchester lawyer facing federal child pornography charges arrested by FBI at courthouse". Concord Monitor. Retrieved 2013-01-22. 
  5. ^ a b c Humphreys, Adrian (2012-11-20). "U.S. family values lawyer accused of bringing girl to Canada to make child pornography". National Post. Retrieved 2013-01-22. 
  6. ^ a b "Jury selection to begin in Manchester lawyer's child porn trial". New Hampshire Union Leader. 2013-01-07. Retrieved 2013-01-22. 
  7. ^ Lawyer faces new child exploitation charge. WMUR-TV, 2013-01-03.
  8. ^ Vincent, Dale (2013-01-09). "Prosecutor says attorney considered girl 'an object, a thing'". New Hampshire Union Leader. Retrieved 2013-01-22. 
  9. ^ a b c Lawyer accused of being sexual predator of 14-year-old girl. WMUR-TV, 2013-01-09.
  10. ^ a b Vincent, Dale (2013-01-10). "Female attorney guilty of bringing 14-year-old to Canada to make porn". New Hampshire Union Leader. Retrieved 2013-01-22. 
  11. ^ Lawyer guilty in child pornography trial. WMUR-TV, 2013-01-10.
  12. ^ Sentencing delayed in child pornography case. The Associated Press, 2013-04-17.
  13. ^ Blackman, Jeremy (2013-05-23). "Former Manchester lawyer sentenced to 40 years for producing child pornography". Concord Monitor. 
  14. ^ "N.H. lawyer faces prison term for sexual exploitation of teen". Associated Press. 2013-01-10. Retrieved 2013-01-22.