Mexican drug cartel thugs pull mourners from a wake, line them up against the wall and shoot them dead
Local papers report up to 17 people were shot dead at the funeral in Mexican state of Michoacan
Victims were seen with their hands above their heads against a wall before they were mowed by the gunmen
Massacre comes two weeks after gunmen killed nine people at funeral in Mexico
Killings happened in an area where the Jalisco New Generation Cartel (CJNG), the Nueva Familia Michoacana gang, and elements of the Knights Templar Cartel have been engaged in a turf war
Horrifying video from the Mexican state of Michoacan shows the moment members of a drug cartel pulled around 17 mourners from a wake before lining them up against a wall and shooting them dead.
The victims were seen with their hands above their heads against a wall before they were massacred by the gunmen.
Between 10 and 17 people were shot dead by the cartel shooters at the funeral in the town of San Jose de Gracia in the Mexican state of Michoacan on Sunday, according to local reports.
The massacre came just two weeks after gunmen killed nine people, including a 12-year-old boy, mourning the death of a man who died in jail in two separate attacks in the northern Mexican city of Ciudad Juárez on Sunday.
Footage captures the gunmen mowing down the victims.
In Sunday’s attack, the suspects had arrived at the scene in broad daylight and took the victims outside before lining them up against a wall.
Video, recorded by a local resident who has not been identified for safety reasons, shows the mourners lining up against a wall with their hands in the air while surrounded by men with rifles.
The gunmen, who were seen positioning themselves around their vehicles in the street, then opened fire on the victims.
Footage suddenly cuts away before cutting back to where the mourners had been standing. The victims could be seen lying on the floor, as smoke from the guns rose up into the air.
The massacre took place in an area where the Jalisco New Generation Cartel (CJNG), the Nueva Familia Michoacana gang, and elements of the Knights Templar Cartel carry out illegal activities and battle for turf.
The Secretariat of Public Security (SSP) in Michoacan State said they sent a team of National Guard and Mexican Army personnel to the scene after receiving a report of the shooting. The authorities are trying to ‘locate the possible perpetrators and create the conditions for staff at the Michoacan Prosecutor’s Office to carry out the necessary procedures that allow us to clarify the facts’.
The State Prosecutor’s Office said the murder scene had been ‘recently cleaned’ and ‘no victims were found’.
However, investigators found the containers of the cleaning products in and the casings for firearms of various calibers. The police also seized a motorbike and two vehicles that sustained gunshot damage during the attack, as the investigation continues.
Earlier on February 12, in a similar attack gunmen killed nine people at a wake and funeral service.
The killers first burst into a residence where friends and family had gathered at the wake of an inmate who had died a week earlier and shot dead two women and a man, reported the BBC.
They then moved to the location of a funeral service for the same inmate and killed six more people. Among those killed was a 12-year-old boy and his father.
Investigators told local media there were strong indicators that the same criminal group was behind both attacks.
According to government figures, Michoacan was the third-worst state for homicides in 2021 with 2,732 registered murders.
Mexico registered 33,308 homicides in 2021 after the two most violent years in the country’s history, with 34,690 murder victims in 2019 and 34,554 in 2020.
The state of Michoacan is in the midst of a battle over control of the region’s agricultural produce – avocados. Organized crime groups have been jostling for a slice of the avocado trade through robbery, kidnapping and extortion.
Earlier this month, the Biden administration cut off Mexican imports following death threats from cartel members to a U.S. health inspector.
Local media report that rivals of the Jalisco New Generation Cartel ( CJNG ) stole a pickup truck, beat up engineers and threatened a US inspector through a phone call. The events occurred in Uruapan, Michoacán , the land of the avocado, ” the green gold ” of Mexico. That development prompted the US government to suspend Mexican avocado imports 24 hours before the Super Bowl .
The Mexican avocado ban, which stopped avocados from being shipped from Michoacan – the only state allowed to export avocados to the US – was resumed days later after the introduction of new unspecified measures to ensure the safety of US inspectors
In early February, before the incident with the inspector, the Mexican army entered Aguililla without the use of force.
Since then, the military has patrolled several towns in Michoacan that bear the scars left by traffickers: bullet holes, barricades and graffiti with the acronym “CJNG” on walls.
The US had imposed the ban following a death threat to an American health inspector by Mexican cartel members who had demanded he sign off on their black market batch of avocados, according to Mexican outlets.
Local newspapers report that the drama began when the Cárteles Unidos stamped a batch of avocados from the central state of Puebla as if they had been produced and packaged in Michoacán – which provides about 80 per cent of America’s avocado supply and serves as the world’s largest avocado exporter.
The US health official noticed and USDA agricultural technicians at the Uruapan packing plant noticed and refused to sign them off, El Blog del Narco reported.
In response La Opinión revealed, the gang stole a truck from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and beat up a group of agricultural technicians in the city of Ziracuaretiro on Friday, .
They then called the American health inspector and threatened to murder him unless he signed off on the latest avocado shipment.