Manchester lawyer facing federal child pornography charges arrested by FBI at courthouse
A Manchester lawyer took a teenage girl to Canada, had her engage in sexual activity and convinced her to let it be filmed, according to federal indictments.
FBI agents swiftly arrested Lisa Biron yesterday morning as she awaited a hearing on child pornography charges at Manchester’s district court. About 9 a.m. FBI agents entered the courtroom, told Biron to leave her belongings and took her into an adjoining conference room where she remained for several minutes before coming out in handcuffs.
Outside, Biron ducked her head below the backseat window of a white vehicle as it was driven away from the courthouse.
A few hours later in U.S. District Court in Concord, Biron, who is associated with a national coalition of Christian lawyers, was formally told of the federal charges against her: transportation with intent to engage in criminal sexual activity, possession of child pornography and five counts of sexual exploitation of children.
Judge Landya McCafferty decided to detain Biron yesterday, largely, she said, because she is believed to have broken most of the bail conditions imposed on the district-level pornography charges.
A judge there ordered Biron last month to use her computer only for work, not possess weapons and have no contact with the teenage girl in the five videos and two pictures found on her computer.
The no-contact order was the only condition Biron appears to have honored, prosecutor Helen Fitzgibbon told McCafferty.
Fitzgibbon said since her release, Biron posted an advertisement on Craigslist, the same listing service where she met the individual who ultimately tipped off the Manchester police about the pornography on her computer.
And when Biron was arrested yesterday, she told FBI agents who were preparing to search her home that they would find a loaded pistol under her mattress. Agents didn’t find that gun, but they did find 200 rounds of ammunition in Biron’s home, Fitzgibbon said yesterday.
That was enough evidence for the judge, who said that while she didn’t consider Biron a flight risk, she was concerned her release would be dangerous for the community.
McCafferty told Biron she was “not at all comfortable” she would abide by new bail conditions if released.
“There is evidence that you at least thought you had a loaded gun under your mattress,” McCafferty said.
She told Biron the evidence was “extremely troubling,” considering her career as a lawyer.
In making her case that Biron should be held, Fitzgibbon also made the following allegations:
∎ Two witnesses have testified to seeing Biron in possession of ecstasy, marijuana and cocaine.
∎ Biron sent a threatening text message to the person who turned her in to the police, advising him he would have to watch his back “FOR EVER.”
∎ Biron sent a text to a friend saying she might flee to Cuba because she had “nothing left.”
∎ Biron has asked people to lie to law enforcement about her case.
∎ Other juveniles have been subjected to Biron’s sexual activity and drug use.
Biron’s appointed lawyer, Jim Moir, asked the judge to consider her lack of criminal history when weighing her release. He said Biron has lived in New Hampshire for more than 40 years. And he said she has willfully appeared at all of her court appearances on the district-level pornography charges.
“She’s had plenty of time to flee already,” Moir said. “She has not.”
He also noted that Biron was ordered by a judge to relinquish her passport last month.
The district court charges, seven counts of possessing child pornography, were filed against Biron on Oct. 9.
The police began investigating Biron about a week before that when a man came into the Manchester Police Department and reported that he had seen pornography on her computer, according to Captain Nick Willard. Officers received a search warrant and executed it at Biron’s 42 Pratt Court home in Manchester on Oct. 9. A forensic search was completed on her computer, and she was arrested after investigators found the pornographic materials, according to Willard.
Biron was scheduled for a probable cause hearing yesterday where a judge would have weighed whether there was enough evidence for the case to be forwarded to Hillsborough County Superior Court.
Biron’s appointed lawyer on those charges had filed to waive the hearing just before the FBI agents took her into custody.
The federal charges against Biron are scheduled for trial in January. If convicted, she faces 10 years to life in prison on the transportation charge and 15 years to life in prison on each of the exploitation of children charges.
Records show Biron became a lawyer in both New Hampshire and Massachusetts in 2008.
Biron was briefly associated with the Donais Law Offices in Manchester before her arrest; she is now on an indefinite suspension.
Biron is associated with the Alliance Defending Freedom, a group of lawyers who, according to their website, are committed to keeping “the door open for the spread of the Gospel” by advocating for “religious liberty, the sanctity of life, and marriage and family.” In Concord, she worked with the ADF in defending a Pentecostal Church on Mountain Road in its tax fight against the city.
She recently served on the board of directors at Mount Zion Christian Schools in Manchester, according to the school’s headmaster.
On Biron’s Facebook page, which was taken down in recent weeks, she had listed the Bible as her favorite book.