MEXICO CITY: Mexican authorities discovered at least 166 bodies at a mass grave site in Veracruz state, prosecutors said Thursday, the latest horrifying find in a region hit by bloody drug cartel turf wars.
Home to the city of Veracruz, one of Mexico’s largest ports, the eastern state has a history of corrupt politics and grisly power struggles between rival cartels — a toxic mix that has caused an explosion of violence.
“The remains of at least 166 people have been found” in the latest mass grave site discovered in Veracruz, state prosecutor Jorge Winckler told journalists, making it one of the largest such sites so far.
The grave is located in central Veracruz, but authorities are not releasing the exact location for security reasons, he said. Forensic specialists are still working at the scene.
Winckler said investigators had also found 200 articles of clothing, 144 ID cards and other personal belongings at the site since exhumations began on August 8.
An informer told authorities that hundreds of people in all were buried at the site, the state prosecutor’s office said in a statement.
“Based on forensic analysis of the discoveries, it had been determined that these are clandestine burial sites which are at least two years old,” it said.
Authorities have used drones and ground-penetrating radar to help them locate the bodies.
They released photographs of investigators combing through the thick vegetation at the site, wearing white protective suits and gloves.