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Morgue on the move: one of two trailers used to store bodies in Jalisco. Morgue on the move: one of two trailers used to store bodies in Jalisco.

Attorney general second to fall in Jalisco morgue-on-wheels case

Governor says bodies should not have been removed from forensic sciences institute

Another head has rolled in the morgue-on-wheels affair in Jalisco. The state attorney general was removed from office yesterday, following Monday’s dismissal of the head of the Jalisco Institute of Forensic Sciences.

The dismissals were announced by Governor Jorge Sandoval Díaz in the case of the refrigerated trailer carrying 157 bodies that was shuffled around the Guadalajara metropolitan area on the weekend.

He later told news outlets that there was a second trailer containing bodies from the overrun state morgues, bringing the total to as many as 300.

Forensics chief Luis Octavio Cotero Bernal was fired Monday but has denied any responsibility in the mobile morgues cases, asserting that the state attorney general was to blame for purchasing the trailers, ordering that unreclaimed and unidentified bodies be stored in them and then sending one of them on its weekend odyssey.

Last night, the governor dismissed Attorney General Raúl Sánchez Jiménez, stating that transporting the 254 bodies did not follow protocols and that the remains should never have left the premises of the Jalisco Institute of Forensic Sciences.

Jalisco Ombudsman Dante Haro Reyes said both Cotero and Sánchez had decided to move the trailer and its cargo to a rented warehouse in Tlaquepaque. Later, the officials ordered the vehicle moved to Tlajomulco but it became stuck in mud near a residential area.

Haro added that Cotero and Sánchez arranged the transportation verbally, bypassing administrative procedures. The Institute of Forensic Sciences also failed in its task to properly care for the bodies.

Sandoval observed that the institute did not formally request an expansion of its storage facilities, and that it also omitted to allocate funds for the creation of new burial grounds.

He was expected to meet forensic sciences institute staff today.

Source: Milenio (sp)

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