MEXICO CITY: Mexican officials on Friday discovered the bodies of 11 people who had been tied up, tortured and shot dead inside a residence in the border town of Ciudad Juarez, in northern Chihuahua state, the prosecutor's office told Xinhua.
Juarez Mayor Armando Cabada told the local press that the victims were three women and eight men. He said the shooters placed paraphernalia used in the consumption of the synthetic drug "crystal" on the victims' bodies, Xinhua reported.
Police officers were at the site searching for clues, according to officials. Although initial reports said the victims had been shot, police were still working to corroborate that information.
According to Cabada, neighbors told authorities the house was uninhabited but was regularly used for parties.
Local daily El Diario de Chihuahua published images of the grisly scene on its website, showing bodies lying face down on the floor in different rooms. All were bound at the feet and had their hands tied behind their backs, and seemed to have been shot execution style.
Juarez has seen a wave of violence this year, which officials in Chihuahua have attributed to fights between the criminal groups La Linea and Los Aztecas, both of which have ties to drug cartels. To date there have been 700 homicides in the city.
The house is located a few blocks from State Prison 3, the daily said, adding initial reports "indicate that at least two women are among the victims."
Juarez, which lies directly across the border from El Paso, Texas, was for years ravaged by drug-related crime, leading the government to send the military to pacify the city. The strategy appeared to have been effective, with reports of crime falling.