Fifteen mutilated bodies were found in two abandoned vehicles in western Mexico on Wednesday, officials said on Thursday, in what appears to be the latest violence as a result of the country's deadly drug war.
The bodies were found by municipal police in two vehicles located about 50 meters (164 feet) from the kilometer 25 marker on the Guadalajara-Chapala highway in the municipality of Ixtlahuacan de los Membrillos, which is located in the state of Jalisco.
Jalisco Attorney General Tomas Coronado Olmos, after a meeting with Governor Emilio Gonzalez, said most of the bodies inside the two SUVs were mutilated. All of the bodies belonged to male victims who have yet to be identified, but he said it appears the murders were an act of vengeance against an organized crime group linked to the northern state of Tamaulipas.
Furthermore, Coronado Olmos said that on Tuesday morning, two people were able to escape from a residential house in the town of Ahuisculco in the municipality of Tala, where police later found at least ten other people, aged between 18 and 25, who were also being held captive.
Security forces continued responding to the incident and, in search of the assailants, they found the two SUVs on the Guadalajara-Chapala highway. Two people were also detained, among them a 25-year-old woman who reportedly confessed to being a member of the Millennium Cartel.
Investigations are ongoing, but authorities believe all of the victims and assailants behind both incidents are related.