6 bodies found near north Mexico tourist resort

AP News
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Posted: Dec 18, 2009 5:47 PM

Police found six bullet-ridden, decomposing bodies Friday near a highway leading to a Mexican resort on the Gulf of California.

The six men were found half-buried on a dirt road off the highway frequently used by tourists from Arizona to reach the Puerto Penasco resort, widely known as Rocky Point, according to Sonora state police.

The men's identities and the motive for their killing have not been established. Shell casings from an assault rifle _ a weapon favored by Mexico's violent drug cartels _ were found nearby.

In the Sonora border city of Nogales, state police found a man's body in a plastic container bearing drug-related messages.

And the Mexican army reported Friday that four suspected drug traffickers and two local policemen were killed Thursday night in a shootout with soldiers in General Zuazua, a town in the outskirts of the northern city of Monterrey.

Two policemen apparently had been protecting the traffickers, the army statement said.

Soldiers found a list with names of local policemen who may have been on the payroll of the drug gang, the army said. They also found more than 1,320 pounds (600 kilograms) of marijuana and several guns at the scene.

Also Friday, gunmen killed Pedro Picasso, assistant football coach of Mexico first-division team Indios, in the border city Ciudad Juarez, said Jacinto Segura, a spokesman for the local prosecutor's office.

A second, unidentified person also died in the shooting at a cell phone shop. Segura gave no motive, and it was unclear who was the target of the attack.

Bystanders often get caught in the middle of drug gang battles that have made Ciudad Juarez the most violence city in Mexico and one of the deadliest in the world.

More than 2,500 people have been killed this year in the city across the border from El Paso, Texas. Among them are university professors, an honor student and waiters caught in the crossfire.

The Indios brought good news seven months ago to the troubled city when they reached the semifinals of Mexico's first-division playoffs before losing to Pachuca.

Picasso, 34, coached Indios de Ciudad Juarez youth teams since 2005.

"The Indios family is at a loss to express its outrage," the club said in a statement. "He was a good, decent man. Pedro Picasso Garcia was snatched away by violence in the most vile way only known to cowards."