Ciudad Juarez: bodies discovered revive fear of serial killings


A skull in Juarez, one of Mexico's border towns.


Spencer Platt

Authorities in Mexico announced today that forensic testing shows the 12 skeletal remains discovered along the US border all belonged to girls and young women, with many very close in age, according to The Associated Press.

The announcement will revive fears of renewed serial killing in the violent border town of Ciudad Juarez in Chihuahua state. Between 1993 and 2005, the city was the scene of the serial killings of more than 100 women.

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The AP said the remains, sets of bones, were discovered in fields east of the town in the Juarez valley and that, where age could be determined, the victims were between the ages of 15 and 19 years. Causes of death were not announced and authorities had not ruled out that the remains of additional victims were mix in among the remains.

Victoria Caraveo of Women of Juarez, an activist organization, said today’s announcement could mean that organized killing by a group had occurred.

"This could be a well-organized gang […] with some people kidnapping them, others mistreating, using or raping them, and others dumping the bodies," Caraveo was quotd as saying by the AP.

Enrique Peña Nieto, front-runner in the presidential elections scheduled for July 1, said earlier this month that his government would rapidly reduce drug violence which has cost the lives of 50,000 people since 2006, according to Reuters.

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Ciudad Juarez, which has seen horrific violence from the drug trade, would be the site of a pilot project using tax breaks to revive the local economy, Nieto reportedly said.