PEOPLE's Most Shocking Scandals

Heidi Fleiss, Interngate, the Battling Bobbitts – look at the most astonishing events of the past 30 years. By Lucy Maher

01 of 15

HOLLYWOOD MADAM

HOLLYWOOD MADAM
David Keeler/Getty

Hollywood panicked when Heidi Fleiss, who brokered high-priced call girls for celebrities (including Charlie Sheen), threatened to name names from her coveted black book – but she never did. Arrested in June 1993 on felony charges, Fleiss finally began a 26-month prison sentence for tax evasion, pandering and money laundering in 1997. She detailed her sexploits in the 2003 book Pandering.

02 of 15

MIKE TYSON

MIKE TYSON
Sipa; AP; Starfile

Tyson's wife Robin Givens (right) went public in 1988 with reports of his violent behavior before divorcing him after eight months of marriage; he served three years in jail for raping 18-year-old beauty queen Desiree Washington in 1991 (left); and he briefly lost his boxing license after biting off part of Evander Holyfield's ear during a 1997 heavyweight fight in Las Vegas (center).

03 of 15

HUGH & THE HOOKER

HUGH & THE HOOKER
AP; Evan Yee/Reuters

At 1:30 a.m. on June 27, 1995, British actor Hugh Grant, the cute, bumbling star of Four Weddings and a Funeral, was arrested in Los Angeles on charges of engaging in a "lewd act" in his BMW with prostitute Divine Brown. Grant's punishment: a $1,180 fine, two years' probation, an AIDS education program ? and the wrath of then-girlfriend Elizabeth Hurley.

04 of 15

BATTLING BOBBITTS

BATTLING BOBBITTS
Globe; Potomac News/Sipa (2)

In June 1993, Lorena Bobbitt cut off husband John Wayne Bobbitt's penis with an 8-in. knife, and later threw it out a car window. Lorena claimed she had been physically and verbally abused and was acquitted of malicious wounding charges. John Wayne was cleared on marital sexual assault charges, dabbled in porn, and in 2002 was charged with assaulting his new wife.

05 of 15

MICHAEL JACKSON ACCUSED

MICHAEL JACKSON ACCUSED
Richard Young/Rex

In November 2003, Santa Barbara sheriff's deputies arrested Michael Jackson and later charged him with molesting a 13-year-old boy. Jackson, who had settled a 1993 civil molestion case for a reported $20 million, denies the charges: "Before I hurt a child, I would slit my wrists," he told 60 Minutes. He is not expected to testify before the grand jury.

06 of 15

LONG ISLAND LOLITA

LONG ISLAND LOLITA
Globe; Mike Alexander/AP

Amy Fisher, 17, became known as the infamous "Long Island Lolita" when she shot the wife of her 38-year-old lover, mechanic Joey Buttafuoco, in the face at the couple's Massapequa, N.Y., home on May 19, 1992. Fisher served six and a half years in prison for the attempted murder of Mary Jo Buttafuoco, while Joey Buttafuoco got a six-month jail sentence, $5,000 fine and five years' probation for statutory rape.

07 of 15

CHEERLEADER MURDER PLOT

CHEERLEADER MURDER PLOT
David Scarbrough/AP; Getty

So much for team spirit. Channelview, Texas, mom Wanda Holloway was sentenced to six months in jail and nine years' probation for the 1991 plot to kill Verna Heath. The motive? Holloway wanted to keep Heath's daughter Amber, 13, from trying out for the school's cheerleading team to clear the way for her own daughter, Shanna, also 13. Juror Tim Evans called Holloway's hatred of Amber "venomous."

08 of 15

JIM BAKKER & JESSICA HAHN

JIM BAKKER & JESSICA HAHN
Time Life/Getty; Globe

After a 1980 hotel-room tryst between televangelist Jim Bakker and then-21-year-old church secretary Jessica Hahn came to light in 1987, the truth spilled out: Bakker's wife, Tammy Faye, was addicted to prescription drugs, members of their ministry engaged in wife swapping, and Bakker supported his lavish lifestyle by siphoning millions from his religious empire. He served five years in a Minnesota prison.

09 of 15

INTERNGATE

INTERNGATE
Sipa

On Jan. 21, 1998, months after former White House intern Monica Lewinsky first told Pentagon colleague Linda Tripp of her relationship with President Bill Clinton, the Washington Post reported that independent counsel Kenneth Starr was investigating whether Clinton had urged Lewinsky to deny the affair. The year that followed brought a grand jury investigation and impeachment hearings.

10 of 15

ICE-CAPADES

ICE-CAPADES
Corbis Saba

It was no ordinary day at the ice-skating rink when Olympic hopeful Nancy Kerrigan was hit in the leg by a club-wielding assailant on Jan. 6, 1994. Tonya Harding, her skating rival, was implicated in the plot; her husband, Jeff Gillooly, served jail time for conspiracy. Harding pleaded guilty to one felony conspiracy count, and was later banned for life by the U.S. Figure Skating Association.

11 of 15

WOODY & SOON-YI

WOODY & SOON-YI
Globe; Bill Davila/Retna

In early 1992, Mia Farrow ended her longtime relationship with Woody Allen after finding nude photos of her 21-year-old adopted daughter Soon-Yi in his apartment. A public battle royale ensued: Farrow accused Allen of sexually molesting daughter Dylan, then 7, and he unsuccessfully sued for custody of their three kids Satchel, Moses and Dylan. Allen and Soon-Yi are now married and have two children.

12 of 15

MISS AMERICA REVEALED

MISS AMERICA REVEALED
AP

Vanessa Williams made history when she was named the first African-American Miss America on Sept. 17, 1983. But just 10 months later, Williams relinquished her title after a firestorm erupted when nude photos she had taken a year before being crowned surfaced in Penthouse. "It has never been my desire to injure the Miss America pageant," Williams said at the time.

13 of 15

CAUGHT ON TAPE

CAUGHT ON TAPE
Mavrix; Black Star; AP; Rex

Busted! Rob Lowe narrowly escaped 1989 porn charges when a sex tape involving him and two Atlanta women (aged 16 and 23) surfaced; Pamela Anderson and Tommy Lee failed to stop their sex tape from hitting stores in 1997; RampB singer R. Kelly faced child porn charges (some were later dropped) after police seized pictures of him and an underage girl having sex. And who can forget Paris Hilton?

14 of 15

CHARLES & DIANA & CAMILLA:

CHARLES & DIANA & CAMILLA:
Ian Burns/Camera Press/Retna; Ian Jones/FSP/Liaison/Getty

Two years after Diana's explosive biography documented her marital misery, Prince Charles revealed his affair with Camilla Parker Bowles in a June 1994 television interview. Diana responded 18 months later in a BBC TV interview saying "there were three of us in this marriage, so it was a bit crowded" and admitting to an affair with former military officer James Hewitt.

15 of 15

BRITNEY SAYS "I DO"

BRITNEY SAYS "I DO"
Splash News

Jaws dropped among fans and family alike when word got out that on Jan. 3, 2004, Britney Spears (in jeans and a baseball cap) wed hometown pal Jason Alexander in a Las Vegas chapel. They appealed for an annulment 55 hours later. "It's just a moment that got out of control, and there was no one there to stop them," said the groom's mom.

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