Body found just across Mexico border in southern Arizona

Reuters News
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Posted: Jul 05, 2011 4:00 PM

TUCSON, Arizona (Reuters) - The body of a Mexican man found in a plastic bag in far south Arizona, may have been murdered in Mexico and then dumped over the border fence, authorities said on Tuesday.

U.S. Border Patrol agents found the man's body about 20 feet north of the international border, 3.5 miles west of the port of entry in Lukeville, Arizona, on Monday, the Pima County Sheriff's Department said.

"The agents saw the plastic bag in the desert. When they went to investigate, they found the deceased man inside," Deputy Dawn Barkman said.

"There's a possibility that he was murdered in Mexico and then dumped on our side of the border," she added.

Barkman said the dead man was in his fifties or sixties. His body showed obvious signs of trauma, although the time and manner of death would be determined at an autopsy scheduled for Wednesday.

Lukeville, which is around 150 miles southwest of Tucson, lies on a corridor for both human and drug smugglers from Mexico.

Barkman said that all lines of inquiry were currently open in the homicide investigation, including the possibility that death was tied to smugglers.

(Reporting by Tim Gaynor; Editing by Greg McCune)