Authorities have found 38 bodies in six hidden graves in the metropolitan area of Guadalajara, Jalisco, since June 6, all of them in abandoned houses.
Officials from the Jalisco Institute of Forensic Science recovered the bodies of nine men and one woman this week from a property in the Villa Fontana Acua housing estate in Tlajomulco, a municipality located to the south of the state capital.
Ten bodies were also recovered last weekend from a clandestine grave in a house in the Santa Elena de la Cruz neighborhood, near Guadalajara’s historic center.
According to state Attorney General Raúl Sánchez Jiménez, the involvement of members of the Jalisco New Generation Cartel (CJNG) has been confirmed in both cases and two people are currently under investigation.
With regard to the Tlajomulco case, Sánchez said that as in other cases in the municipality, criminals used an abandoned house to dispose of the bodies.
“[The houses] don’t have basic services, there is no water or electricity, the doors are falling down, the windows are covered with newspaper, cardboard or blankets . . . They’re properties that maybe the owners couldn’t pay for or they didn’t like the area anymore and they abandon them. These people [criminals] arrive and take possession of them,” he said.
The latest discovery follows the recovery of seven bodies last month that were buried in the backyards of four abandoned homes on the same street in the municipality’s Lomas del Mirador neighborhood.
More bodies were also found last month in two abandoned homes in the Chulavista housing estate in Tlajomulco, on a property in the municipality of El Salto and in a makeshift grave in the neighborhood of La Mezquitera in Tlaquepaque.
The Attorney General’s office and the Tlajomulco municipal government are now seeking to develop a strategy in conjunction with the National Workers’ Housing Fund (Infonavit) to combat the abandonment of homes and to avoid organized crime taking possession and using them to sell drugs, commit murders and dispose of bodies.
There are currently 15,000 abandoned houses in Tlajomulco, according to municipal data.
An increase in violent crime in Jalisco this year has included the kidnapping and murder of three film students in March, the disappearance of three Italian men in January and an attack on the former attorney general in May.
The Jalisco New Generation Cartel is suspected of being involved in all three cases.
Source: El Universal (sp)