Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Aaron Biber, Guilty

Rochelle Olson at the Minneapolis Star-Tribune reports that once prominent Super Lawyer, Aaron Biber, entered a guilty plea to first degree sex with a minor.  Excerpts from reporter Olson's story follow:

[Minneapolis] attorney Aaron Biber pleaded guilty Tuesday morning to one count of first-degree criminal sexual conduct for sex with a minor over whom he authority.

Jury selection was set to start Tuesday morning for Biber, 47. Until his arrest, Biber practiced civil law at the Gray Plant Mooty law firm in Minneapolis and was treasurer of the State Bar Association. He is no longer with the firm and divorced from his wife since his arrest.

Biber cried as he explained why he decided to enter a plea. 'I thought a lot about it. The fact is I committed this crime. I don't want to put the victim, his family, my family, my sons and my former wife and colleagues through this,' he said. The plea gives to Hennepin County District Court Judge Lloyd Zimmerman the decision on Biber's sentence. Assistant Hennepin County Attorney Judy Johnsont said she will be asking for more than the maximum of 14 years because of 'aggravating factors' in the crime. The defense will ask for probation for Biber, who has no criminal record.

Zimmerman ruled that photos taken by the 15-year-old alleged victim wouldn't be admitted in the case against Biber.

One of the photos showed the boy with a small Adolf Hitler-style moustache and his arm raised in a Nazi salute. Zimmerman also declined to admit 37 images from the boy's cell phone.  Prosecutors sought to bar the photos. Assistant Hennepin County Attorney Judy Johnston argued they were inflammatory and not allowed under rape shield laws. Those laws prohibit the sexual history of an alleged victim from being used at trial. Johnston said the boy told her that he 'didn't know why' he took the Hitler-esque photo and that it was 'just a dumb kid thing to do.'

Defense lawyers wanted the photo admitted on grounds that it showed bias against Biber, who is Jewish. The alleged victim is not."


  1. As you will recall this is the guy that was the President-elect of the Wisconsin Bar Association. Whenever you hear about merit-selection, it's these sorts of guys, no I don't mean child pederasts, but these bar association, big firm, smarmy characters that find their way onto the bench. It's why there is still so much opposition to the selction of judges versus election of judges.

  2. Um, yeah, because the public is sooooo much better informed about who would make a good judge.

  3. Minnesota, not Wisconsin, dumbass! Since when does your personal life need to be involved with your work life? Doctor's, Priests, Teachers, Lawyers, Truck Drivers, etc... have a right to their personal life being private. Everyone makes mistakes, and i am not defending Mr. Biber, however, one does not know why one commits a crime and until then, should your PRIVATE life stay PRIVATE. This has nothing to do with "judges". The Judges in Minnesota are, for the most part, awesome, and are elected to the Bench! The public, in general, don't understand, look at the President for example. PLEASE, he wasn't going to help the poor black people that voted for him, just a game, and now look at our society! Please.....

  4. Wow, Anon@7:26--

    I'm trying to figure out your issue in re: the personal life observation? Sure, a person can have a pretty F$#$^d up personal life and still be a judge, but there are plenty of examples where the opposite is true as when the lawyer or Judge is a pedophile and we've seen more than Biber come down the pike in the last year on Bad Lawyer and at local news websites. Vice versa, we saw an example of a truck driver with a porn and sleep issue effecting his professional life as when he slammed into a parked car and killed a woman on a Buffalo-area highway.

    Isn't the point that all of our actions even the little ones--as lawyers and judges have implications for how the public views the Rule of Law. I personally, know that my professional and personal tax offenses destroyed a career devoted to representing victims of sexual abuse and others and probably added to the general cynicism about lawyers and the law in this area where I was once prominent. There is a narrative about ourselves and a mirror held up by the stories, here, including the story of Aaron Biber.

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  6. Anon@2:08
    No offense, but I became a prominent attorney by envisioning the use of tort law in an effort to address pedophilia--when no one else was doing it. In the jurisdiction, I call OurState I brought lawsuits that returned then-record multi-million dollar verdicts. Despite my poor grammar, articles and law notes I wrote were repeatedly published--thank God, for good editors. Newspapers and other media, sought me out for an historical perspective on the dimensions of an issues. So if you read leading histories of child sex abuse, and clergy sex abuse you will see me referenced or credited. While I may not write like you would imagine a "prominent attorney" writes, I do the best I can with my limited skills.

    I suppose substance might have counted for something. 'Sorry your snotty comment got deleted.