Friday 18 April 2014

10 killed in Mexico gun massacre

Ten people celebrating a basketball triumph have been shot dead at a house in Mexico

Gunmen have burst into a home in Mexico where people were celebrating a baseball team's victory and killed 10 people, authorities said.

A seven year-old girl was among those gunned down in the house east of the border city of Ciudad Juarez.

The killings occurred in Loma Blanca, a town in the Juarez Valley. The other victims were the girl's mother, three teenage boys and five adult men, said Arturo Sandoval, spokesman for Chihuahua state prosecutors' office.

The bodies were found scattered around the home, suggesting some tried to flee when they were gunned down. A trophy from the baseball game was also found at the home. Shell casings found at the scene indicated the killers used assault rifles in the attack.

It was one of the biggest massacres in the area since the 2010 killing of 15 people in an attack on a birthday party in Villas de Salvarcar, a working-class neighbourhood of Ciudad Juarez, across the border from El Paso, Texas in the US.

The Villas de Salvarcar massacre was believed to have involved a case of mistaken identity, in which one drug gang attacked a party it mistakenly thought was attended by members of a rival gang.

Mr Sandoval said there was no information yet on the possible motive in the Loma Blanca killings.

The Juarez Valley, a largely agricultural region that stretches along the Rio Grande, has been the scene of frequent turf battles between the Gente Nueva gang, backed by the Sinaloa drug cartel, and gunmen of the local Juarez cartel.

However, violence in Ciudad Juarez and surrounding areas has dropped significantly from its peak in 2010.

For the state of Chihuahua, where Ciudad Juarez is located, there were 767 homicides in the first half of this year, down from 1,205 in the same period last year, 1,670 in 2011 and 1,856 in 2010.

Press Association

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