CIUDAD JUAREZ, Mexico – Eight people were murdered in separate incidents in Ciudad Juarez, located across the border from El Paso, Texas, while a police commander in Veracruz state was murdered and his body dismembered by suspected members of “Los Zetas,” the armed wing of the Gulf drug cartel, Mexican officials said Sunday.
Seven of the killings in Juarez occurred early Sunday at nightclubs and bars, prosecutors said.
Three men were gunned down as they entered the Tequila bar in the southern section of Juarez.
Two other men – a manager and a waiter – were murdered at about the same time inside La Despedida, a nightclub located on one of the border city’s main avenues, prosecutors said.
Two businessmen were gunned down at Ghost, a bar located in Plaza Cantera, one of the toniest residential sections in Ciudad Juarez.
The final victim in the wave of killings in Juarez was a man shot several times while driving in the northern section of the border city.
Juarez, which is located in Chihuahua, is considered Mexico’s most violent city, with more than 2,000 drug-related killings reported so far this year.
The Juarez drug cartel has been battling the Sinaloa cartel for control of the border region and smuggling routes into the United States.
In the southeastern state of Veracruz, meanwhile, the remains of Casto Acevedo Manzano, chief of the Public Safety Secretariat’s 6th Region, were found Saturday near a store called “Mi Regalito” (My Little Gift) in Soledad de Doblado, a city located about 20 kilometers (12.4 miles) from the port of Veracruz.
Acevedo Manzano’s arms, hands, legs and head were cut off and left along with a message on a mat in Soledad de Doblado, where federal police and army troops killed Braulio Arellano Dominguez, a suspected Zeta leader in Veracruz, last Tuesday, Public Safety Secretariat officials and prosecutors said.
Former Veracruz Public Safety Secretariat 6th Region chief Gen. Octavio Rojas Robledo and his bodyguard, Humberto Artigas Lara, disappeared on Sept. 5, 2008, and their whereabouts are unknown.
The SUV the two men were traveling in was found burned.