Hollywood alert as madam to the stars prepares to tell all

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The Independent US

Some of Hollywood's best-known party animals could have their bedroom secrets aired in court after a woman pleaded guilty to running what prosecutors called America's "most exclusive" prostitution ring.

Michelle Braun, a 31-year-old mother of two, admitted running an internet escort service matching porn stars, Playboy centrefolds, and struggling actresses with men who paid up to $50,000 (£30,000) a night for sex. Her clients included politicians, business tycoons and film stars.

Braun was arrested in 2007 after flying a woman from Orange County, California, to New York to meet a client who turned out to be an FBI agent. In March this year, she was charged with money laundering and prostitution.

She originally denied the allegations, telling Rolling Stone magazine: "All I do is make introductions between girls and rich guys who want to meet them."

Her lawyer, Mark Nurik, later said the public would be "shocked" by the identity of clients, adding: "I'm not sure people would pay to meet a porn star and talk about Stephen Hawking's latest book."

The case has caused alarm in entertainment circles and seen Braun compared to Heidi Fleiss, the madam convicted in the 1990s of supplying call girls to A-listers including Charlie Sheen. Pictures have surfaced of Braun socialising with Paris Hilton, Mickey Rourke and Terrence Howard, though there is no suggestion they have anything to do with the charges against her.

Braun, who is believed to have made $8m (£4.9m) from her business, pleaded guilty as part of a bargain under which she will pay a $20,000 fine and serve six months of house arrest.

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