The Jalisco New Generation Cartel has claimed responsibility for killing 19 people whose bodies were found along a boulevard in Uruapan, Michoacán, Thursday morning, apparent victims of the conflict between the cartel and the gang known as Los Viagras.
Michoacán Attorney General Adrián López Solís told a press conference that the bodies of seven men and two women were found hanging from an overpass on Bulevar Industrial around 5:30am.
Soon after, the bodies of another six men and one woman were found under a pedestrian overpass on the same boulevard. Police later found more bodies in the Ampliación Revolución neighborhood. Many of the bodies had been dismembered.
All the victims had been killed by gunshots.
In a written message left with the bodies, the Jalisco cartel took responsibility for the killings and threatened their rivals, including the Viagras gang, which is a branch of the Nueva Familia Michoacana cartel.
“We want to make clear that whoever helps La Chatarra, Ronal, Ratón, Moto, Mono Verde, Maniaco or Filos will end up like this,” the message read. “Kind people, go on with your routine. Be patriotic, and kill a Viagra.”
Michoacán officials announced plans to increase the presence of security forces and asked the federal government to deploy more National Guardsmen and improve coordination between state and federal forces. The National Guard has been deployed in Michoacán since June.
Uruapan is the state’s second-largest city and one of the top-50 most violent municipalities in Mexico.