Oswald Alonso, San Diego Union-Tribune, August 22, 2010
The decapitated bodies of four men were hung from a bridge Sunday in this central Mexican city besieged by fighting between two drug lords.
A gang led by kingpin Hector Beltran Leyva took responsibility for the killings in a message left with the bodies, the attorney general’s office of Morelos state said in a statement.
The beheaded and mutilated bodies were hung by their feet early Sunday from the bridge in Cuernavaca, a popular weekend getaway for Mexico City residents.
Cuernavaca has become a battleground for control of the Beltran Leyva cartel since its leader, Arturo Beltran Leyva, was killed there in a December shootout with marines.
Guerrero state has been wracked by drug-gang violence, including the strife within the Beltran Leyva cartel. There have also been a series of deadly carjackings this year along highways in the state.
Mexico has seen unprecedented gang violence since President Felipe Calderon stepped up the fight against drug trafficking when he took office in December 2006, deploying thousands of troops and federal police to cartel strongholds.
Since then, more than 28,000 people have been killed in violence tied to Mexico’s drug war.