A clandestine grave containing at least 29 bodies was found in Tlajomulco de Zúñiga, Jalisco, in an area where over 80 illegally buried cadavers have been found since November.
“Of the 29 victims, as of now four have been identified, for whom investigations have been opened in the Attorney General’s specialized missing persons department,” the Jalisco Attorney General’s Ofice said in a statement on Monday.
Search efforts are still underway at the site located just 80 meters from another clandestine grave from which investigators pulled 50 bodies in December.
Another hidden grave in Tlajomulco found in November contained 31 bodies.
Located near Guadalajara, Mexico’s second largest city, Tlajomulco is among many municipalities in the region in which such discoveries were made last year.
A National Guard operation on November 8 rescued eight kidnapping victims from a warehouse in the neighboring town of Tlaquepaque. National Guard soldiers also confiscated weapons and made 15 arrests.
In September, 138 plastic bags of human remains were found in Zapopan, just west of Guadalajara, and 17 were found in nearby Tala. Another 15 bags were found in Zapopan in October.
Also in Zapopan, 30 bodies were found buried at a house on May 7 of last year.
Authorities say that the violence in Jalisco has intensified since March 2017 after interior conflicts caused a rift in the Jalisco New Generation Cartel (CJNG), which also has outside rivalries with criminal organizations in neighboring Guanajuato for the control of illegal fuel trafficking.
Government statistics show that 873 clandestine graves were uncovered in Mexico in 2019 alone. Of the 1,124 bodies found in them, only 395 have been identified.
The highest number of graves were located in Sinaloa, home of infamous drug kingpin Joaguín “El Chapo” Guzmán, who was convicted of drug trafficking by a U.S. court in February of last year.
Jalisco and Colima followed Sinaloa on the list of states where the most clandestine graves werediscovered in 2019.
Over 3,000 graves have been discovered since 2006, when the government declared war on drug traffickers, and almost 5,000 bodies have been found in them, according to official statistics.
The number of disappeared persons has markedly increased since 2006. According to the latest report from the National Search Commission, there are now over 61,000 people on the National Registry of Missing and Disappeared Persons.
Source: Cultura Colectiva (sp)