HARLINGEN, Texas (KVEO)—A judge found probable cause to link 12 Tamaulipas state police officers to the murder and burning of 19 people late last month, according to the Tamaulipas Attorney General’s office.
The suspects were identified as Mayra E. “V”, Jorge A. “C”, Williams “F”, Edgar “M”, Horacio “R”, Carlos “R”, Jorge “C”, José L. “L” , Héctor J. “A”, Christian E. “G”, Ismael “V” and Horacio “Q”.
Tamaulipas state Attorney General Irving Barrios Mojica said all 12 officers were in custody and face charges of homicide, abuse of authority and making false statements.
The attorney general did not say what motive the officers might have had, though corrupt local and state police in Mexico are often in the pay of drug cartels.
The bodies, most of whom wre believed to be migrants, were found piled in a charred vehicle near Camargo, across the Rio Grande from Texas, in an area that has been bloodied for years by turf battles between the remnants of the Gulf cartel and the old Zetas cartel.
Authorities have said four of the dead have been identified so far — two Guatemalans and two Mexicans. Their names have not been released by officials, but relatives of one of the dead Mexicans said he worked as an immigrant trafficker.
Of the 19 bodies examined by experts, 16 were found to be males, one was confirmed as female and the two others were so badly burned their gender had not yet been determined.