Wednesday, March 8, 2023

Two US citizens kidnapped in Mexico were discovered dead, while two others survived

Two US citizens kidnapped in Mexico found dead, two survive

 MATAMOROS: In what appeared to be a tragic case of mistaken identity, two US citizens who were kidnapped by suspected Mexican drug traffickers were discovered dead on Tuesday, while two others survived.

Washington promised to do everything in its power to get justice for the victims, who crossed the border on Friday for medical reasons into the violent city of Matamoros in the state of Tamaulipas.

According to Tamaulipas Attorney General Irving Barrios, the abduction appeared to be the result of a "mix-up" rather than a deliberate act.

According to officials, a land border crossing between Matamoros and Brownsville, Texas, brought the two survivors back to the United States.

They were reported as Eric James Williams and Latavia Washington McGee by US media.

Americo Villarreal, governor of Tamaulipas, claims that one was shot in the leg, while the other was unharmed.

He stated that one of the victims planned to undergo cosmetic surgery when they visited Mexico.

Villarreal stated that preliminary investigations suggested that all four were alive until at least Monday. It was not immediately clear whether the two deaths occurred prior to or during the rescue operation.

He stated, "In order to create confusion and avoid rescue efforts, the four people deprived of their liberty were transferred to various places, including a clinic, during the three days following the criminal act."

Villarreal went on to say that after forensic examinations were finished in Mexico, the bodies of the two Americans who died were anticipated to be returned within hours.

The US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) stated in an earlier statement that the victims had arrived at Matamoros on Friday in a white minivan bearing North Carolina license plates.

It offered a $50,000 reward for information that led to the arrest of the perpetrators and the return of the unidentified victims.

"The passengers in the (minivan) were shot at by unidentified gunmen shortly after crossing into Mexico. According to the FBI, "armed men placed all four Americans in a vehicle and removed them from the scene."

Mexican authorities stated that a 33-year-old Mexican woman died nearby, possibly from a stray bullet.

The kidnappings were condemned by the White House as "unacceptable" and condolences were extended to the victims' families.

John Kirby, a spokesperson for the White House's national security, stated, "We're going to work closely with the Mexican government to ensure that justice is done in this case."

The Justice Department, according to US Attorney General Merrick Garland, will "relentlessly" pursue justice on behalf of the victims.

He went on to say, "We will do everything in our power to identify, find, and hold responsible the individuals responsible for this attack on American citizens."

At a residence in Matamoros, Mexican authorities claimed to have detained a suspect who was keeping watch over the kidnappers.

In his condolences to the victims' families, Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador told reporters, "We're very sorry that this is happening in our country."

"The culprits will be identified. "They will be punished," he continued.

One of the Mexican states most affected by organized crime and drug trafficking is Tamaulipas.

The US representative to Mexico, Ken Salazar, said that the snatching was "a heartbreaking update" that the two nations must "fortify the battle against criminal associations" along their common line.

More than 340,000 people have been killed in the Latin American nation as a result of violence brought on by cartels since the government launched its drug war in 2006.

Due to risks like "gun battles, murder, armed robbery, carjacking, kidnapping, forced disappearances, extortion, and sexual assault," the US State Department advises against traveling to Tamaulipas.

Despite the dangers, Matamoros is a major stopover for irregular migrants en route to the United States. It is on the banks of the Rio Grande, which separates the two countries.

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