LA arson suspect under investigation for Germany fire

Los Angeles Arson

Mona Shafer Edwards/AP

In this courtroom sketch, Harry Burkhart, a native of Germany who has been living in Los Angeles and is suspected in a series of arson fires, is restrained by guards as he alternately tries to stand and sit during his arraignment in Los Angeles Superior Court, Wednesday, Jan. 4, 2012 in Los Angeles. Burkhart was charged with 37 counts of arson in connection with a rash of fires that terrorized Los Angeles over the New Year's weekend. (AP Photo/Mona Shafer Edwards)

Harry Burkhart, the 24-year-old suspected of setting more than 50 intentional fires in Los Angeles last week, is also under investigation in his home country of Germany for a fire that destroyed a Burkhart family-owned property days before he traveled to the United States in October, said a prosecutor on Wednesday.

Burkhart is said be silent about the fires during interrogations, reserving his words primarily for "rants against law enforcement and against the United States in general," reports the L.A. Times. He is expected to make a court appearance Wednesday and face charges on suspicion of arson.

According to a LAPD official, the uncooperative Burkhart has been placed on suicide watch, however no details were given about the circumstances that led authorities to implement the measure.

The arson suspect's mother, Dorothee Burkhart, is also being held by authorities, She is wanted in connection with 19 counts of fraud in Germany. A 2007 warrant for her arrest was issued by a Frankfurt judge, according to court documents.

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