Two Guatemalan nationals and two Mexicans have been identified among the 19 bodies found burned on a rural road in a border area between Mexico and the United States, a judicial source said on Saturday.
“For the moment, four victims have been identified thanks to information from families, including two of Mexican nationality and two of Guatemalan nationality,” said in a statement the prosecutor of Tamaulipas, in northern Mexico.
The four victims are the first to be identified by the Mexican authorities after the incidents on January 22 in the municipality of Camargo.
Residents of the city of Comitancillo, Guatemala, suspect that at least a dozen of their relatives are among the 19 people who were found burned, according to authorities in the Central American country.
“Preliminary and subject to the final results, it was determined that 16 (victims) were male, one female while two bodies are awaiting clarification due to the high degree of calcination,” said the parquet.
Authorities have established that the van where the bodies were found had received 113 bullet holes.
According to the first elements of the investigation, no cartridge case was found on the spot, the prosecution not excluding that the victims may have been killed in another place.
Camargo, 15,000 inhabitants, borders Texas and is close to the Mexican state of Nuevo León.
The city is also neighboring Miguel Aleman (20,000 inhabitants) adjoining the American city of Roma (Texas). In January 2019, 24 corpses, including 15 charred, were found in Miguel Aleman, after clashes between criminal groups.
The region is regularly the scene of clashes between the North West cartel, which controls part of Nuevo León, and the Gulf cartel, which has been raging in Tamaulipas for decades.
Mexico recorded 34,523 assassinations in 2020, down slightly from 2019 (34,608) which marked a record since the government began recording them in 1997, according to official figures.
Violence has grown steadily in the country since the end of 2006, when the fight against drug trafficking became the business of the army, with more than 300,000 assassinations since that date.