MEXICO CITY (AP) — Mexico City saw yet another chapter in a shocking crime wave of child killings when police caught two boys carrying the body of a murdered child in a suitcase.
The case comes 10 days after a man was caught wheeling the hacked-up bodies of two adolescent boys down a downtown Mexico City street on a dolly.
The city prosecutor’s office said the latest crime was discovered Wednesday morning on a street near the scene of the first crime. The office said the two incidents were unrelated, but experts say drug gangs in the city have increasingly recruited young teens to peddle drugs and collect extortion payments, because in Mexico they can’t be charged as adults.
The office did not give the age or names of the two suspects or their victim, but local media reported the two suspects were 15 and the dead boy was 14.
The suspects reportedly told police they had been paid to get rid of the body. They were dragging the suitcase along a sidewalk in the tough Guerrero neighborhood, and when police officers stopped them, they dropped the bag and it partially opened, revealing the victim’s head.
The two were turned over to the city’s juvenile offenders agency. The most serious punishment they could be subject to would be to be kept in non-prison custody until age 18.
In the Nov. 1 case, police said the two murdered boys were downtown residents of Indigenous background and they were apparently killed by people involved in street-level drug dealing.
Mayor Claudia Sheinbaum said at the time that “it appears that it involved an issue of drug dealing,” but gave no further details. Neither she nor prosecutors gave the victims’ ages, but local media reported they were 12 and 14.
The boys lived in the same downtown area where their bodies were found, and they reportedly earned money selling candy in the street.