11 Bodies Found in Mexico, Some With Torture Signs

MORELIA, Mexico (AP) - Eleven people were found shot to death
around Mexico on Saturday, some bearing signs of torture and left
with threatening messages emblematic of drug violence.

Four of the victims were found in a car in the western city of Apatzingan, along with a message threatening the Zetas, a group of
hitmen for the Gulf cartel. The message was signed La Familia, a drug gang battling for territory in western Michoacan state.

Another slain man was found in the western port city of Lazaro Cardenas, also with a threatening message from La Familia to the

A sixth man was found on a highway in the city of Morelia. He had been shot in the head three times and left with a T-shirt pulled over his head and his hands handcuffed behind his back. A seventh was found shot to death in the town of Tacambaro.

La Familia was once considered aligned with the powerful Gulf cartel, but it was named as a separate gang in a government list of most-wanted drug trafficking suspects released last month.

President Felipe Calderon's government has attributed fractures in the cartels to a military crackdown, saying the arrest of drug kingpins has set off internal battles for control that have led to Mexico's sharp surge in drug-related violence.

Four other bodies were found around the southern Pacific coast state of Guerrero, including two men left in the trunk of a car in the resort town of Zihuatanejo. The two were blindfolded and had their hands tied behind their backs, according to a police report.

Another man was found burned on a highway linking Mexico City to
the resort city of Acapulco and a fourth died in a shootout in the city of Chilpancingo.

Mexico's drug violence has killed some 9,000 people since 2006.

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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