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SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA / A news summary : The Local Review / DEVELOPMENTS IN LOS ANGELES COUNTY : Heidi Fleiss Leaves Prison After Serving 3 Years

September 22, 1999

LOS ANGELES — Heidi Fleiss was released from the federal prison in Dublin, Calif., Tuesday after serving more than three years for money laundering, tax evasion and attempted pandering in connection with her high-priced Hollywood call girl ring.

Fleiss, 33, was arrested in June 1993 after four of her employees were caught in a vice sting. Her clients were said to include celebrities and top businessmen, but the names in her book were never made public.

After testing positive for narcotics, she underwent treatment in a drug rehabilitation facility in 1994. While awaiting trial, she capitalized on her notoriety, opening lingerie shops in Pasadena and Santa Monica.

In December 1994, a state jury convicted her of pandering, but the verdicts were thrown out after several jurors admitted trading votes in a misguided attempt to avoid a deadlock and satisfy a contingent that wanted to win her a lenient sentence.

In 1995, she was convicted of the money laundering and tax evasion and sentenced to 37 months in federal prison. Two years later, to prevent the state from retrying her, she pleaded guilty to attempted pandering and was given an 18-month sentence that was served concurrently with the federal sentence.

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