A defense attorney has asked state Attorney General Kamala Harris to take over the prosecution of former water director Steve Collins, citing a litany of conflicts confronting the District Attorney's Office.

In a letter delivered Tuesday, San Francisco lawyer Dan Clymo, who represents Collins, states the already tainted prosecution was further complicated by a judge's ruling last week that only Monterey County, not California American Water, can challenge the contracts from the failed Regional Desalination Project.