Photo: Violence in Mexico (Manoso)
Organized crime was behind the murder and subsequent beheading of three men in the western Mexican state of Michoacan, authorities said.
Three severed heads were found before dawn Thursday in a roundabout on the road linking the towns of Los Reyes and Periban, the state Attorney General’s Office said.
The victims, identified only as three men in their late 20s or early 30s, were fatally shot before their heads were cut off.
Authorities have yet to find the bodies.
Accompanying the severed heads was a threatening message directed to the community self-defense groups that have arisen over the past year in Michoacan and neighboring Guerrero state, the AG’s office said.
Indigenous communities in both states formed groups to defend themselves against a criminal organization that calls itself “Los Caballeros Templarios” (Knights Templar).
The Caballeros are said to dominate the trade in synthetic drugs bound for the United States, such as crystal meth. But the gang also preys on ordinary people, engaging in extortion, kidnapping and murder.