Sep 30, 2014 7:27 PM

3 charged with homicide in Mexico army killings

The Associated Press

MEXICO CITY (AP) Three soldiers have been charged with homicide in the June killings of 22 suspected gang members in southern Mexico, the government announced Tuesday.

Attorney General Jesus Murillo Karam said a total of eight military personnel initially participated in an 8- to 10-minute gunfight with the armed suspects in the rural town of San Pedro Limon.

Subsequently, three soldiers allegedly unleashed "a new series of gunshots that had no justification whatsoever," he said. They were to be formally arraigned Wednesday.

Murillo Karam did not say whether the suspected gang members had surrendered, but a witness to the confrontation has told The Associated Press that 21 had already given up when they were killed.

The army initially reported that all the suspects had died during a firefight in the June 30 incident in San Pedro Limon.

The Associated Press visited the scene days later and reported no evidence of a shootout at the scene. Instead, bullet holes and blood stains indicated some were shot against a wall a close range.

On Monday, a U.N. special rapporteur for human rights called for the Mexican government to conduct a thorough investigation of the incident as a possible case of "summary executions."

Last week it was announced that seven soldiers and an officer were detained under the military justice system. Those charges are separate from any civil probe.

The Federal Attorney General's Office and the governmental National Commission on Human Rights are also investigating.


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