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Attorney digging into accused killer Ammar Harris' assets

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Updated: 4/22/2013 10:30 am
LAS VEGAS (KSNV MyNews3) -- The attorney representing the family of one of three people killed in the February shooting and accident on the Las Vegas Strip is investigating the finances of accused killer Ammar Harris.

Bob Beckett said he believes Harris -- who told Judge Deborah Lippis on Wednesday that he was broke and was then appointed a public defender -- has stacks of cash and other assets that he is hiding from the court.

"Right now we're investigating his alleged assets, which, at this point from the information that we've gotten, appears to be is assets are quite substantial," Beckett told News 3.

One of their findings is a boat Beckett says they believe Harris owns in Florida. It's unclear if a video posted online by Harris is the same one, but Beckett says the boat is worth about $800,000.

But there's one big problem.

The challenge is to connect the assets to Harris because most of them, if not all of them, are in someone else's name.

One of the most damming accusations against Harris is that he was a pimp, living it up in Las Vegas. Beckett said his investigation leads him to believe that's 100 percent true.

"We have received information that one of the prostitutes working for Mr. Harris was bringing in something in the neighborhood of 40 to 50 thousand dollars a month," Beckett said.

That's a lot of cash coming in to ask for a public defender.

For a lawyer to be offered free of charge, the court does an interview with a defendant and they fill out an application. The process doesn't go much further and people can lie.

But Beckett says if they find that Harris has money, they'll make sure the truth gets out.

"If we are able to connect some of these alleged assets to Mr. Harris, then of course we will inform the court and the court will be first in line to be repaid for any legal services that have been given to Mr. Harris," Beckett said.

So if Beckett is successful in his quest to find a hidden stash, the taxpayers would have the first crack at getting reimbursed for Harris' legal fees.

Harris is being held without bail in the Clark County Detention Center after being moved early last week from the Los Angeles jail where he had been fighting extradition.

Clark County District Attorney Steve Wolfson is considering whether to pursue the death penalty if Harris is convicted of three murder and related charges.



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