Crime & Justice

German man convicted of setting rash of Los Angeles fires

File: 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.
File: 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.
Mona Shafer Edwards/AP

A German man who spread fear across Los Angeles for several nights as he torched cars and homes to avenge his mother's deportation has been convicted of more than 40 arson counts.

Harry Burkhart was found guilty Thursday for setting fires on three nights around New Year's 2012.

Prosecutors say Burkhart vowed to "roast America" to get even for his mother's deportation before setting the blazes from Dec. 30, 2011 until Jan. 2, 2012.

The fires in occupied houses, garages and cars didn't cause any serious injuries. But damage exceeded $3 million.

Defense lawyers plan to present an insanity defense in a second phase of trial starting Tuesday in Los Angeles Superior Court.

The 29-year-old faces nearly 90 years in prison for the convictions if he's found to be sane.