Friday, December 1, 2023

Forensic institute head dismissed over Jalisco’s ‘morgue-on-wheels’

The head of the Jalisco Institute of Forensic Sciences has been dismissed for his role in the case of the refrigerated trailer carrying 157 bodies that was shuffled around the Guadalajara metropolitan area on the weekend.

There was no room for the semi-trailer’s cargo in overrun state morgues so it was first parked in a Tlaquepaque neighborhood until its foul odors triggered complaints that sent the trailer to another residential area in Tlajomulco de Zúñiga.

The offensive smells followed the trailer and its decomposing cargo, forcing authorities to send it to a warehouse in an industrial area of Guadalajara.

Yesterday Jalisco Governor Jorge Sandoval Díaz announced the dismissal of forensics chief Luis Octavio Cotero Bernal. He said the investigation into the morgue-on-wheels case was not closed and more dismissals could follow,

” . . . I understand and heartily regret the uncertainty caused by this kind of erratic action on the part of authorities,” the governor said.

He pledged that unidentified, unclaimed bodies would be treated with dignity at all times. “I promise to make up for this episode by providing an assurance that we will hire the best qualified staff . . . to avoid instances of negligence and indifference.”

The sanction imposed on Cotero should be an example for all public servants involved in the custody, transportation and handling of unreclaimed corpses, continued Sandoval, adding that he would not “tolerate dehumanizing treatment or alterations of established procedures.”

Source: El Financiero (sp)

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