ROCK & ROLLED
June 24, 2004 -- The ex-manager of the hard-rock band Kiss was exposed yesterday as a $2 million deadbeat dad - the city's worst, authorities said.
Jesse Hilsen, 64, once a top East Side shrink, was busted in the Catskills Saturday night after 10 years on the run, the feds said.
Hilsen, who used 10 aliases while hiding out in three countries, was arraigned in White Plains Monday on charges of violating a new federal law against evading court-ordered child support. He was held without bail.
Hilsen raked in $300,000 to $500,000 annually in the four years he managed Kiss, but has filed for bankruptcy and refused to pay alimony of $950 a month to his ex-wife, Rita, 62, the mother of his three children.
Rita lost her East Side apartment in the bankruptcy proceeding and has lived in an 8-by-12-foot room in a shelter for the last eight years.
"He complied with nothing. He laughed in the judges' faces," the angry ex told The Post. "His own children were on welfare and food stamps. We didn't have food. We had to go to food pantries."
Hilsen was found by Brooklyn private eye Steve Rambam, who tracked him from Holland to Israel to South Africa and finally to his uncle's home in Westkill, N.Y.
Rambam learned that while on the run, Hilsen married for yet a third time, took out Israeli citizenship and obtained two South African ID cards.
"This is one of the most outrageous deadbeat-dad cases I've ever seen," the private eye said.
Hilsen managed Kiss from 1988 to 1992, getting the job because guitarist Paul Stanley, one of the group's founders, was his patient.
On Oct. 29, 2002, a judge ruled Hilsen owed his wife $1.9 million.
This puts him above Dr. David Lawrence Adams, the No. 1 deadbeat on the city Human Resources Administration's "Hall of Shame." Adams owes $1.5 million.
Hilsen went on the run in 1994 after a state arrest warrant was issued for his failure to pay alimony. Last July, he was indicted under the new federal law.
Hilsen filed for divorce in 1984 after 19 years of marriage. Before the divorce was finalized in 1988, he took out huge mortgages on marital real estate and then filed for bankruptcy, court documents show.
The bankruptcy stopped the divorce in its tracks. Ultimately, Rita's apartment was sold to pay other creditors.
"My life has been lonely, desolate and devoid of the simple pleasures that people use to sustain themselves," Rita said. "But I felt I had to keep fighting."