Los Angeles police on Monday afternoon booked a 24-year-old man on suspicion of arson after an L.A. County sheriff’s deputy detained him in connection with a string of more than 50 deliberately set fires.
Booking records identified the man as Harry Burkhart, a Hollywood area resident. He is being held in lieu of $250,000 bail at the Inmate Reception Center in downtown L.A.
No new arsons have been reported since the suspect was taken into custody, but police stressed that the investigation was ongoing.
The fires have caused $2 million in damage, authorities said.
According to law enforcement sources, Burkhart has been involved in a dispute with federal immigration officials.
Burkhart appears to have been battling the U.S. government over the immigration status of his mother.
The Los Angeles Police Department is in communication with federal immigration officials concerning the dispute, the law enforcement sources said.
A man who was arrested in connection with a string of arson fires across the Los Angeles area reportedly told police officers, “I hate America,” when they put him in handcuffs on Monday.
According to a witness the suspect, 24-year-old Harry Burkhart from Germany, uttered the words as he was pulled over and arrested early Monday, L.A. Weekly reported.
Police made the arrest after a tip from federal officials who thought they recognized the grainy figure caught on a surveillance video near where a car fire was reported.
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Most of these fires were set just a few miles away from where we live.
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