The Mexican press is reporting that the body count has reached 72 persons in a number of mass graves in San Fernando, Tamaulipas, with possible links to the Los Zetas drug cartel.
Originally the authorities found the bodies of 59 people in eight mass graves on public land on Wednesday, March 30, El Universal reported. The newspaper noted today that at least 13 more bodies have been discovered.
Meanwhile, La Jornada examined possible causes of the killings: that Los Zetas was abducting members of rival cartels and extorting their families for their supposed ransom; that the victims were trying to reach the US by bus but did not pay a fee to a cartel; and that Los Zetas was intending to add them to the cartel's ranks.
Just two of the victims have been identified as of yesterday, Noticias de Tamaulipas reported, with the office of the state Secretary-General of Justice confirming that they were from San Fernando.
Fourteen people have been arrested in connection with the grisly discovery: nine on April 1 and five more on April 6. Also on April 1, authorities freed five kidnapping victims, Alejandro Poire of the National Security Council told the media.
Tamaulipas has witnessed similar atrocities in the past. Last year, near the site of the mass graves unearthed in the previous week, authorities found the bodies of 72 Central and South American migrants.