Gunmen hung the bodies of six men from three overpasses and left narco-messages in the tourist hotspots of La Paz and Cabo in Baja California Sur. The gory scenes greeted morning commuters and served as a reminder of the raging violence between rival cartels.
The battered corpses hanging from the overpasses of this popular tourist region highlight the apparent inability of the Mexican government to control cartel violence and provide security for its citizens. The bodies were found in the early morning hours first in La Paz, along the highway that leads to the airport, Mexico’s Revista Proceso reported.
Around the same time, the bodies of two other men were spotted hanging from an overpass along a highway leading to the Los Cabos International Airport. Soon after, authorities responded to another report of two men in the tourist hotspot of Cabos San Lucas.
Responding police units later the discoveries at each location, requiring the investigators from the state attorney general’s office as well as forensic experts to process the crime scenes and collect the bodies. The cartel practice of hanging bodies from bridges appears to not have been previously seen in Baja California Sur.
While rare in the tourist hotspot, the practice is alive and well in other parts of Mexico where cartel violence continues to escalate. Breitbart Texas recently reported on three men who had been left hanging from an overpass in the coastal state of Nayarit.
The banners left behind at the three separate crime scenes appear to have been a message by Los Guzmanes and Los Tegoripeños, threatening their rivals.
In recent months, the once quiet area around Baja California has seen an escalation of cartel violence that led to the deployment of military forces to take control of public security duties, Breitbart Texas reported. The violence is linked to a fight for control by the Sinaloa Cartel and Cartel Jalisco Nueva Generacion (CJNG).
“Los Guzmanes” relates to a cell working for the Sinaloa Cartel that is controlled by the relatives of jailed leader Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman. “Los Tegoripeños” appears to be an allied regional unit. The Tegoripeños surfaced in early November when narco-messages began to appear in La Paz and Los Cabos, warning the governor and law enforcement agencies to align with them, Mexico’s SDP reported.
Robert Arce is a retired Phoenix Police detective with extensive experience working Mexican organized crime and street gangs. Arce has worked in the Balkans, Iraq, Haiti, and recently completed a three-year assignment in Monterrey, Mexico, working out of the Consulate for the United States Department of State, International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Program, where he was the Regional Program Manager for Northeast Mexico (Coahuila, Tamaulipas, Nuevo Leon, Durango, San Luis Potosi, Zacatecas.)