Recent Broward Law Blog Features

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

'Heidi Fleiss of Houston' Case Brings Back Memories of Kathy Willets Here in Broward

There is a nice picture of Kathy Willets taken by Sun Sentinel Photographer Lou Toman on the wall of the Floridian Restaurant on East Las Olas. And if you walk a few doors down to my news stand, you can buy the 1992 edition of Playboy with Anna Nicole Smith's debut cover story. That surprising issue, now selling for one hundred bucks, also features the famous story of local hooker Kathy Willets, her deputy sheriff husband Jeff, and their amazing prosecution here in Broward, filming the vice mayor and other prominent society types doing the nasty.

It occurred to me that 1992 is well, 18 years ago, that there are young lawyers who may know nothing at all of that which I speak. They know not of hookers and housewives and husbands secretly filming their tricks while hiding in a closet and the nationwide newsworthiness which followed the breasted busts. Florida's Naughty Nympho is today I think a Vegas escort. You can google her, or just call Jamie Benjamin for an appointment :-)

But nothing in the news is really new. It is a repeat of an old story made new. So today in Houston we learn that a group of lawyers on the ‘Heidi Fleiss of Houston’ client list may be interviewed by other attorneys working the case. So it may be a surprise to some but not to those of us in South Florida who have already marched through that legal muck.

An arrest of the alleged "Heidi Fleiss of Houston" netted a white-collar client list of 1,500 or so, which includes a number of attorneys, reports the Houston Chronicle, based in part on court documents. We had a bank of two dozen attorneys fighting not to release those 'John Doe' lists because they were not really john does. They were us.

There apparently is extensive documentation of the customers who patronized a prostitution business allegedly operated by Deborah Turbiville, 33, and her 31-year-old husband, because it reportedly required background checks before it would accept a new customer. The two are charged with aggravated promotion of prostitution, a third-degree felony.

Authorities plan to talk with apparent patrons of the alleged prostitution service, the newspaper writes: "Because of the extensive documentation collected, investigators plan to interview those named on the client list. They have not disclosed any of the names." But when they do, the sparks will fly and the divorce papers will file....

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