Official: Bodies of 43 men, 6 women left on Mexico highway

A forensic agent inspects the area where dozens of bodies, some of them mutilated, were dumped on a highway connecting the northern Mexican metropolis of Monterrey to the U.S. border,  in the town of San Juan, near the city of Monterrey, Mexico, Sunday, May 13, 2012.
A forensic agent inspects the area where dozens of bodies, some of them mutilated, were dumped on a highway connecting the northern Mexican metropolis of Monterrey to the U.S. border, in the town of San Juan, near the city of Monterrey, Mexico, Sunday, May 13, 2012. Christian Palma/AP Photo

MONTERREY, Mexico (AP) — Forty-nine bodies, at least some of them mutilated, were found Sunday dumped on a highway connecting the northern Mexican metropolis of Monterrey to the U.S. border, officials said.

A law enforcement official said the bodies of 43 men and six women were found in the town of San Juan on the non-toll highway to the border city of Reynosa at about 4 a.m. (5 a.m. EDT; 0900 GMT), but officials were still investigating.

Authorities closed off the highway, blocking the way for hundreds of motorists, as federal and state police, joined by Mexican troops, sealed off the scene.

The law enforcement official asked that his name not be used because he was not authorized to release the information. The details, however, match reports in Mexican news media.

The discovery echoes several other recent cases in which drug gangs have left bodies scattered in public places as warnings to rivals. Thirty-five bodies were left at a freeway overpass in the city of Veracruz in September. Twenty-six were found in November in Guadalajara. So far this month, 23 bodies were found dumped or hanging in the city of Nuevo Laredo and 18 were found along a highway south of Guadalajara.

Mexican federal police guard one of the three forensic trucks where several bodies were placed after dozens of bodies, some of them mutilated, were found on a highway connecting the northern Mexican metropolis of Monterrey to the U.S. border found at kilometer 47 of the Reynosa-Cadereyta road in the town of San Juan Sunday, May 13, 2012.
Mexican federal police guard one of the three forensic trucks where several bodies were placed after dozens of bodies, some of them mutilated, were found on a highway connecting the northern Mexican metropolis of Monterrey to the U.S. border found at kilometer 47 of the Reynosa-Cadereyta road in the town of San Juan Sunday, May 13, 2012. Christian Palma/AP Photo
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