One of two trucks in which 19 murder victims were found in Tamaulipas. One of two trucks in which 19 murder victims were found in Tamaulipas.

19 burned bodies in Tamaulipas thought to be Guatemalan migrants

They were found at a major smuggling transit point for people and drugs

While Tamaulipas authorities have not confirmed the identities of 19 charred bodies found in two burned vehicles in the municipality of Camargo near the U.S. border, a third-division soccer team in Guatemala is claiming one of the victims as its own.

The victims, who all had gunshot wounds, were found by state authorities on a dirt road in the municipality of Camargo, along with rifles. A Camargo official, who requested anonymity due to security concerns, told CBS News that the killings occurred Friday but that people had been afraid to report them. State authorities announced the discovery Saturday.

Tamaulipas authorities did not confirm assertions made by area residents to local media that the victims were Guatemalans seeking passage to the United States. However, the area where the bodies were found — near the border with Nuevo León — is often known as “the little border” and is a major smuggling transit point for both drugs and people.

On social media, officials with the Guatemalan team Juventud Comiteca condemned the killing of the 19 victims, claiming them to be Guatemalans and that one of them was a young player on their team, Marvin “El Zurdo” Tomás, 22.

“The board of directors, the coaches, players, and the fans of Juventud Comiteca repudiate the vile killing of our compatriots, and especially of our young player, Marvin Alberto Tomás,” the club said Sunday on its official Facebook page. “El Zurdo, thank you for being part of our dream. Thank you for your passion. Thank you for giving us the opportunity to know you … For everything, thank you, champion.”

The Foreign Affairs Ministry said in a statement that Guatemala’s embassy in Mexico and its consulate in Monterrey were communicating with Tamaulipas and federal authorities to determine if any of the victims were Guatemalan.

None of the trucks displayed gunshot holes, nor did authorities find any shells at the scene, suggesting that the victims had been shot elsewhere. One of the vehicles bore registration documents for Nuevo León.

Sources: Infobae (sp), El Universal (sp), CBS News (en)

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