Mexico arrests five in kidnapping, killing of Americans

A still image obtained from a video on social media shows a woman being carried to the back of a white pickup truck. The footage allegedly shows the kidnapping of four Americans in Mexico. PHOTO: REUTERS

MEXICO CITY - Mexican authorities have arrested five people on suspicion of involvement in the kidnapping of four US citizens, two of whom were killed, officials said on Friday.

The prosecutor of Tamaulipas state, where the crime happened, said on Twitter that a warrant had been executed for five people for the crimes of kidnapping and homicide.

They are the same five men who were left with their hands tied on a street by alleged members of the Gulf Cartel, a source in the prosecutor’s office told the AFP.

On Thursday, local media published a statement purportedly from the Gulf Cartel that said the group “apologises” for the incident.

It said that the group had decided to hand the perpetrators over to authorities because they acted without the authorisation of their cartel bosses.

The four abductees were snatched at gunpoint after crossing the border into crime-plagued Tamaulipas state on Friday, apparently so one could have cosmetic surgery.

Two survivors, one of whom suffered a gunshot wound to the leg, were returned to the United States on Tuesday via a land border crossing, hours after they were rescued

The bodies of the two dead Americans were repatriated on Thursday, authorities said.

Mexican authorities believe drug traffickers mistook them for rivals and shot at them when they tried to escape.

A Mexican bystander was also killed in the gunfire.

The prosecutor’s office previously reported the arrest of another suspect who was caught guarding the captives. AFP

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