Mexican authorities have arrested eight members of a drug gang blamed for the recent deaths of at least 67 people in the Gulf coast state of Veracruz.
Navy spokesman Jose Luis Vergara told reporters Friday that the suspects have been in custody since Thursday and belong to a group known as “Jalisco New Generation.” He has described the gang as “just another organized crime group.”
Authorities say the suspects also led police Thursday to 32 of the bodies, which were found in three houses in the Gulf coast seaport. The detainees have also been blamed for dumping the remains of 35 people on a road in the city of Veracruz September 20.
The navy has sought to wipe out speculation that New Generation is a paramilitary group trying to wipe out Mexico’s Zetas drug cartel. Members of New Generation have described themselves as “Zeta Killers” and are believed linked to the Sinaloa cartel.
Mexican President Felipe Calderon has deployed federal police and security forces to Veracruz.
More than 40,000 people have been killed in Mexico since President Calderon took office in late 2006 and began a crackdown on the drug cartels.