At least 3 tourists are still missing after gunmen kidnapped them in Puerto Vallarta 

A criminal organization kidnapping a group of tourists in Puerto Vallarta on July 18

At least 3 tourists are still missing after gunmen kidnapped them in Puerto Vallarta 
Local media have blamed the attack on the Jalisco New General Cartel (CJNG), which is active in Puerto Vallarta - Photo: Eduardo Verdugo/AP
English 29/07/2020 14:42 Mexico City Raúl Torres/EL UNIVERSAL, AP Actualizada 14:52
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Jalisco prosecutors said that three people still seem to be missing after a gang kidnapped a group of tourists at the Pacific resort of Puerto Vallarta earlier this month.

Jalisco authorities have launched an investigation in connection with the enforced disappearance of four tourists.

When the press first reported the story, state authorities said the tourists weren’t missing because their families didn’t file a police report and that there was no evidence regarding a kidnapping.

Jalisco state prosecutor Gerardo Octavio Solís said one member of the group of men visiting the resort from Guanajuato escaped the July 18 attack, in which one of the tourists was killed by a gunshot.

The survivor said many of the abducted men had been taken to a house in Puerto Vallarta, held there, and most were later released. The survivor said it appeared three of the kidnapped men could still be in the custody of their gunmen.

Solís said the mass kidnapping “was an attack directed at three or four people” in the group, who had been touring the area in ATVs and SUVs.

Apparently they were tourists, there had been no previous explanation why the gunmen might attack the group. Local media have blamed the attack on the Jalisco New General Cartel (CJNG), which is active in Puerto Vallarta.

Solís seemed to suggest, without stating it, that the attack may have involved gang rivalries, though the victims have largely been described as businessmen.

He said the man who was killed once had registered addresses in the Santa Rosa de Lima, the home of a local cartel of the same name. The Jalisco Cartel and the Santa Rosa de Lima gang have been fighting a bloody turf war for control of Guanajuato that has made it the deadliest state in Mexico.

Solís said some of the dead man’s relatives had criminal backgrounds.

On Saturday, Solís had said 13 or 14 people from Guanajuato had been confronted in a residential area of Puerto Vallarta.

“There was a series of shots,” Solís said. “One person was left (mortally) wounded at the place, others managed to flee, some on foot, others in vehicles.”

The Puerto Vallarta attack initially recalled memories of the 2011 kidnapping of 20 vacationing men from Michoacán in the Pacific coast resort of Acapulco. Authorities believed those tourists were mistaken by drug traffickers for members of the Michoacan-based La Familia Cartel. Some of the men’s decomposed bodies were later found in a mass grave.

Puerto Vallarta is a beach resort city located on the Pacific Ocean. It is widely popular among national and international tourists. 

Violence in Jalisco

Jalisco has seen a surge in crime and violence in the last decade.

The western state is the base of the Jalisco New Generation Cartel, which is one of the most violent criminal organizations in Mexico and has been blamed for the recent failed attack on Mexico City’s police chief, Omar García Harfuch. It is engaged in a bloody fight over territory with other groups, including a local gang in neighboring Guanajuato known as the Santa Rosa de Lima cartel, led by “El Marro.”

The state has become the scenario of turf wars between rival drug trafficking organizations. Over the years, authorities have found hundreds of bodies inside illegal mass graves. 

On July 20, Jalisco's Attorney General’s Office discovered a mass grave inside a property in Guadalajara. So far, authorities have found 23 corpses and six plastic bags containing human remains.


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