Saturday, December 19, 2009

6 Bodies Found on Ejido Land Northeast of Puerto Penasco

Several incomplete reports about this incident have been broadcast in print and other media in the USA and as a result rumors are already flying my way. So here is a more complete report, as gleaned from several Spanish language news sources, so that you’ll have a better understanding of the events. (See UPDATE at the end of this post)

On the afternoon of Dec. 17 the bodies of six males, approximate ages from 20-35, were discovered about 20 miles north of Rocky Point, on Ejido Aguazarca land. The bodies were found in a “narcofosa” in an unpopulated area to the east of Highway 8, some distance off the road leading into the ejido. Highway 8 is the main road leading from the Arizona/Mexico border to Puerto Peñasco.

Narcofosa is a term coined by journalists in recent years to describe a cemetery or body disposal place, usually clandestine and not meant to be found, related to the drug wars.

Judging by the shell casings found at the site, the young men were killed at that spot and then buried in a shallow mass grave. The bodies were apparently covered with lime to hasten decomposition. The estimated time of death, according to forensic experts, was approximately 6 to 8 days prior to the discovery of the bodies.

A preliminary bulletin from the Municipal Police of Puerto Peñasco put the ages of the victims between 18 and 30 years, and the time of death as up to 15 days prior to the discovery.

According to some reports, the office of the State Police Investigator (la Policía Estatal Investigadora) was alerted to the narcofosa by an anonymous call reporting that animals were caught eating carrion scraps of human flesh. Authorities went out to investigate, located the grave and began an investigation. Staff from the expert services of the PGJE arrived with the necessary equipment to carry out the recovery of the bodies.

No identification was initially found on the victims. Details of the clothing they wore has been published, but as of “press” time there was no way to know where they were from or any other details of their lives and/or connections to the drug wars.

I will update you if/when more details are released.

UPDATE Dec. 27: None of the victims appear to have ties to Puerto Penasco although at least two of them had taken up residence in Sonoyta. The identities of 5 of the victims are as follows:
    Angel de Jesus Valdez, alias "El Burro", 23, originally from Los Mochis, Sinaloa;
    Jorge Antonio Galaviz Zazueta, 27, originally from La Paz, Baja California Sur;
    Jose Refugio Corcoles Cazares, alias "El Topo", 18, of Mexicali, Baja California;
    Jorge Hernandez Sandoval 17, originally from Mazatlán, Sinaloa;
    Emanuel Coto Cajica, alias "Manas", 31, originally from Mexico City.

I have not yet learned the identity of the sixth victim.

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