LA Arson Suspect Investigated in House Fire in Germany

Harry Burkhart, arrested Monday in connection with a series arson fires in Los Angeles, also is under investigation in Germany for a 2011 house fire

By Jonathan Lloyd
|  Wednesday, Jan 4, 2012  |  Updated 6:38 PM PDT
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Shervin Lalezary, the reserve deputy, responsible for arresting Harry Burkhart, the suspect in the LA arson spree, tells Beverly White how the traffic stop and arrest went down.

Beverly White

Shervin Lalezary, the reserve deputy, responsible for arresting Harry Burkhart, the suspect in the LA arson spree, tells Beverly White how the traffic stop and arrest went down.

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Legal Problems for Mother of Arson Suspect

The mother of the LA arson suspect was the subject of a provisional arrest request by German authorities.
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The 24-year-old German man suspected in a series of arson attacks in Hollywood, West Hollywood, the San Fernando Valley and other communities also is under investigation for a 2011 house fire in his home country, according to German authorities.

Harry Burkhart is being investigated in connection with an Oct. 14 house fire north of Frankfurt, prosecutors in Germany told the Associated Press. Burkhart came to the attention of authorities after filing an insurance claim on the burned house, which was owned by his family, on the day of the fire, authorities told the AP.

He has not been questioned in the case and no warrant for his arrested has been issued.

Burkhart arrived in the U.S. in October. His non-immigrant visa is set to expire Jan. 18, authorities said.

The string of arson attacks that began last week in the LA area caused an estimated $3 million in damage. Burkhart was arrested after authorities investigating a fraud case involving his mother reportedly recognized Burkhart in surveillance video released in connection with the arson investigation.

Dorothee Burkhart was in court Tuesday for a detention hearing in the fraud case. She was arrested Dec. 28 on a provisional arrest warrant, which is usually issued when criminal charges are pending overseas. U.S. authorities then obtain an arrest warrant through the State Department and the Justice Department. 

Burkhart's arraignment was been postponed. He is being held on $2.8 million bail and is due back in court on Jan. 24. 

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