Hollywood madam is going to court

August 09, 1993|By New York Daily News

LOS ANGELES -- Heidi Fleiss, an angry young woman who authorities say became a millionaire madam, goes to court today -- and Hollywood is holding its breath.

From big-time executives in the film industry to marquee-name actors and businessmen, attention will be riveted on the courtroom with fear that Ms. Fleiss will reveal the steamy contents of her black book.

Ms. Fleiss, 27, is to be arraigned on five felony counts of pandering and cocaine possession. If convicted, she faces up to 11 years in jail.

Whether the green-eyed brunette will tell all is unknown -- but it is expected that at least three women in her stable of top-money call girls will testify against her.

"She thinks she's untouchable," says one acquaintance.

Ms. Fleiss drives a Jaguar. She lives in a $1.65 million mansion down the road from Jack Lemmon and the Sultan of Brunei, and she is no shrinking violet, says her mentor, Elizabeth Adams, better known as Madam Alex, the Grand Dame of Hollywood madams. Ms. Adams called Ms. Fleiss an "exhibitionist."

"There are 55 madams in L.A., and she liked to be out there, admired," said one source. "She wants to be the rock star."

That's a no-no in the prostitution business -- particularly one that caters to clients willing to pay $1,500 a night, $2,000 if the hooker flies out of town.

Ms. Adams, who thrived for 18 years before her own bust in 1988, always laid low and did not name names. She ended up with a low-probation term.

No one is sure Ms. Fleiss will do the same to protect her clients, who sources say include some of Hollywood's top actors, producers and directors.

Several people who know her say she has "an angry personality," attributing it to the use of amphetamines. Ms. Fleiss has denied being a drug user.

Whatever the cause of her volatility, at least three of her former employees got angry enough with her to give information to the police and take the stand against her, L.A. Police Department Capt. Glenn Ackerman has said.

Their testimony, along with her telephone book, volumes of tapes, bank statements, checkbooks and credit card statements seized by police, may send Ms. Fleiss to jail and leave Hollywood scandalized.

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