Posted Dec 15, 2009 12:13 am CST
A prominent Minnesota lawyer slated to become president of the state bar association in another two years was jailed over the weekend in a teen sex case and is reportedly now on leave from Gray Plant Mooty.
Aaron Biber, 46, was co-chair of the firm’s antitrust and trade regulation practice group, according to the Star Tribune. However, his name has apparently been removed from the firm’s website.
“We are deeply saddened by this completely unexpected news, and are ensuring that the clients Mr. Biber has served are being well taken care of by other lawyers at our firm,” says Tamara Hjelle Olsen in a written statement. She chairs the Minneapolis-based law firm’s board and serves as its managing officer.
Biber’s lawyer, Rachael Goldberger, declined to discuss the charges.
Biber is charged with first-degree criminal sexual conduct and solicitation of a child to engage in sexual conduct concerning a 15-year-old boy he has known for four years, reports the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal.
It says that the Hennepin County Attorney expects to seek $1 million bail at Biber’s scheduled arraignment tomorrow.
As the Star-Tribune puts it, Biber is accused of “plying a teenage boy with alcohol at his home and then raping him.” Police say that Biber then tried to arrange for more sex with the teen as officers listened in on the phone call. He was arrested at a local mall on Friday as he allegedly arrived there to meet the teen.
He is currently treasurer of the Minnesota State Bar Association, which puts him in line to become president of the group in two years.
The current president, Leo Brisbois, calls the accusations against Biber “deeply troubling” in a statement (PDF) and says the bar association is seeking to suspend Biber from his treasurer duties.
Updated on Dec. 16 to include information from Pioneer Press and Business Journal articles.