COATZACOALCOS: The mutilated remains of five people were found in plastic bags in the southeastern Mexican state of Veracruz, one of the country’s most violent regions, officials said on Monday.
The bags were found late Sunday night in the state capital Xalapa, an official from the prosecutor’s office said. The remains were established to be male, five of whom were identified as men whose ages ranged from 21 to 57 years.
“Based on statements from family members, the deceased were involved in the buying and selling of scrap metal, and some worked as mechanics,” the official said.
Police said the men may have been killed for possible links to crime groups.
Violence in Veracruz has been on the rise this year, and official figures showed a 43 percent leap in the murder rate in September from the previous year.
The state government ascribes the rise in violence to power struggles between crime gangs involved in drugs smuggling, illegal immigration from Central America and the theft of fuel from pipelines.
Some of the deadliest cartels in Mexico are locked into the regional struggle, including the Jalisco New Generation Cartel, the Zetas and a splinter group known as the Old School Zetas.
Around 190,000 people have been killed in Mexico since 2006, when the government launched a military campaign on the drugs cartels. The numbers do not show how many of the victims were linked to crime groups.