By Jim Kouri
Mexican national police officers (Federales) on Saturday and Sunday discovered 19 bodies in mass graves in the northern state of Chihuahua, not far from Mexico’s border with the U.S., according to an American drug enforcement officer who requested anonymity.
Eleven of the bodies found on Saturday had been buried for about two years in a desolate area about 25 miles from the violence plagued city of Ciudad Juarez, the source reported.
The other eight bodies are those of victims who had been tortured and killed only a few days prior to when they were found along a road near the town of Rosales. These were discovered on Sunday.
Chihuahua is one of the states hardest hit by drug-related violence in Mexico.
All the victims were male and a preliminary examination revealed they had been shot to death. Many of the bodies also displayed evidence of brutal torture, the American drug agent said.
According to figures released earlier this year by Mexico’s National Human Rights Commission, 16,000 bodies remain unidentified and a total of 24,000 people are missing.
Most of them are believed to be victims of fighting between rival drug gangs or the Mexican military’s fierce response to the drug violence.