UPDATE: Arson Suspect Former Marine Imprisoned for Fires in Japan

The man is the one believed to have set possibly 20 fires in the North Hollywood area in July.

A man arrested on suspicion of torching a motor home in North Hollywood today was suspected in setting 20 or more recent arson fires in the area, and authorities identified him as a former Marine who was jailed for five years in Japan for setting restaurants on fire there.

Kurt Billie, 34, of North Hollywood, was arrested in the wake of a 4 a.m. fire in the 7500 block of Troost Avenue, Los Angeles police spokesman Richard French said. The Air Force Times newspaper identified him a former Marine who spent five years in prison for setting fire to several restaurants in Okinawa.

Investigators were following Billie and arrested him near Lankershim Boulevard and Valerio Street.

A series of vehicle and structure fires broke out early July 21 through 24, starting around 3 a.m. each day. The fires broke between Lankershim and Laurel Canyon boulevards and Vanowen Street and Laurel Canyon Boulevard.

Billie was jailed at the Van Nuys Station in lieu of $250,000 bail.

larry August 03, 2011 at 05:06 PM
Why all the secrecy?????
Judy January 02, 2012 at 07:29 PM
Black minivan... Dodge, I think. Saw him and the van and his arrest early this AM on ABC7, Los Angeles.
Craig Clough January 02, 2012 at 08:32 PM
Judy, you are correct, there was a person detained by police this morning. But this story you have posted this comment on is from this summer. This story is about a separate string of arson fires that rocked the North Hollywood area in late July and early August.
joyce January 02, 2012 at 08:36 PM
Thank you for your clarification, Ted. I kept searching the updated article to find the connection to the current arsonist, but couldn't find one.
Skraeling January 02, 2012 at 11:31 PM
Gotta agree there....is there anything else being developed in Studio City besides, Thai Massage and drug stores and Sec 8 housing?


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