/me can hardly believe there’s nothing here yet!
Heidi Lynn Fleiss was born to Paul and Elissa Fleiss in Los Angeles, California on December 30, 1965. Mr. Fleiss, a prominent pediatrician, was Madonna’s OB-GYN for her first child. Her mother is a nutritionist.
One of six children, she was adventurous and creative as a child. Heidi and a neighbor boy made amateur movies, often starring her younger siblings. No, not those kind of movies. That sort of thing comes later in the story. Her childhood was rather normal until she reached her teens. Heidi had no interest in school; she and the neighbor boy would often ditch. Neither set of parents knew the kids were truant until the school called the neighbor’s mother and reported that they hadn’t attended for 65 days. At 16, Heidi dropped out of high school. She later earned her high school equivalency and briefly attended Valley College and later Santa Monica College.
Heidi spent a lot of time at various trendy clubs in California. She enjoyed the high life, meeting famous people, and using drugs. Her desired lifestyle was expensive, though, so she needed to find a viable way to bring in money. After working as a waitress, she met financier Bernie Cornfeld and began a relationship with him in 1988. Old enough to be her father and terribly wealthy, Bernie was the perfect sugar daddy. Heidi had full use of his homes both in California and abroad. But all this luxury wasn’t perfect because Bernie had a real thing for women. He would not remain faithful, so Heidi eventually left him.
After moving in with a friend, Heidi studied for and passed her real estate exam. Her career in real estate was short lived, however, and after about six months she was looking for another way to make money.
Having earlier been introduced to Elizabeth Adams, also known as Madam Alex, she entered yet another field: prostitution. Heidi began working for Madam Alex, whose clientele consisted only of the rich and powerful of Beverly Hills. Alex had been running her brothel for more than years and had managed to escape arrest by becoming a police informant. She ran her business with her little black book and her telephone from her bed. Madam Alex came to think of Heidi as a daughter and took her under her wing. Heidi helped Alex with her business. When Alex was finally apprehended, Heidi jumped at the opportunity and became a madam in 1990.
Heidi’s venture grew quickly. She built her book of clients and began scouting for girls to work for her. Just as Alex did, when a new girl came on board, she paid for a complete makeover for them and sometimes purchased them new clothes. There was such an ample supply of willing and loaded Johns available that soon Heidi no longer had to look for girls to work for her; they came looking to get involved. Heidi’s girls were paid thousands of dollars a night and got to keep half. The other half went into Heidi’s pocket. Heidi purchased a fancy home in an exclusive neighborhood. She was living the high life and was proud of it, often stupidly bragging about what she did to bring in the dough.
Meanwhile, Madam Alex was convicted and jailed and looking for revenge. She believed Heidi stole her book and her business and no longer had such rosy thoughts toward her. Alex eventually contacted a reporter at the Los Angeles Times and told her the story. Not really expecting anything to come of it, the reporter called Heidi and requested an interview. Shockingly enough, Heidi dimwittedly obliged.
A story was published in the Times. There was a new big cheese at the LAPD who saw the article and decided to take Heidi down. A cop attended a party where Heidi was present and gained an introduction from Heidi’s friend and ex-roommate. He requested the services of a few of Heidi’s girls. Heidi promptly contacted a few of her employees and sent them to a hotel room where they, in turn, were promptly busted. The police arrived at Heidi’s home and arrested her.
In 1993, the Hollywood Madam was charged by the state of California with five counts of pandering. Following a trial, a jury convicted Heidi on three of the five counts. Charlie Sheen, the only client to be named, testified that he alone paid for $53,000 worth of sexual services from Heidi’s girls. Heidi was given the minimum sentence of three years in prison. In 1996, an appeal overturned her conviction after jurors admitted to vote trading. A year later, Heidi was tried in a federal court and convicted of tax evasion and money laundering. She was given a 37-month sentence which she served at the Federal Correctional Institution in Dublin, California.
Since her release, her life is hardly the bed of roses it was while trafficing booty as madam to the stars. Heidi has since been in a couple of movies, including one based on her story. She usually plays herself. Not much of a challenge for the budding actress. She is dating actor Tom Sizemore.
E! True Hollywood Story: Heidi Fleiss