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Aug-23-2010 13:23printcomments

Headless Corpses Hung From Mexican Bridge in Wealthy Neighborhood

The death and violence of Mexico's drug cartels is reaching into new areas.

Image of four headless men hanging upsidedown Courtesy: Cuernavaca
Image of four headless men hanging upside down in Cuernavaca

(CUERNAVACA / SALEM) - The headless bodies of four men were hung upside down by their feet from an overpass in Cuernavaca, an established, wealthy neighborhood outside of Mexico City.

Edgar Valdez Villarreal.
Photo: Noroeste.

The corpses, in their macabre poses, were found early Sunday in this area of rich, elite homes. The Morelos State Attorney General's office reports that the victims' heads and genitals were cut off, also missing from the victims were their index fingers.

Police report that the heads of the men were placed along the side of a highway with a hand-written sign that stated: "This is what will happen to all those who support the traitor Edgar Valdez Villareal".

The South Pacific Cartel, which goes by the initials CPS (Cartel Pacifico Sur), claimed responsibility for the Murders and beheadings. They are described by local authorities as a recently formed gang, responsible for several other brutal and gruesome killings.

Problems Getting Worse

It is hard for some to believe, but the violence connected to Mexico's ongoing cartel drug wars is getting more deadly, and more violent. President Felipe Calderon's push to fight the powerful cartels and rival gangs engaged in literal turf wars with police, has helped drive the death toll to unheard-of numbers; since 2006, when Calderon took office, drug violence has claimed the lives of more than 28,000 people.

A good deal of the violence and bloodshed has centered around Ciudad Juarez, Chihuahua, Mexico as we often report, but the violence is reaching into new areas... Cuernavaca, where these recent gruesome murders took place, is a colonial city that had been exempt from the violence. This is no longer the case.

Pivotal Point

It was the loss of top drug lord, Arturo Beltran Leyva, killed in a shootout with Mexican security forces, that changed the tide in this region. Sources report a power struggle breaking out after Leyva's death. Rival gangs have been trying to claim his territory ever since.

Our contact in Ciudad Juarez, 'Tosh' Plumlee, says Edgar Valdez Villareal, know as "El Barbie", because of his blue eyes and blonde/light brown hair a la 'Ken', Barbie's boyfriend - hence the moniker, is a US citizen born in Laredo, Texas.

He was aligned with the Beltran Leyva cartel but had a falling-out shortly after the head of the BL cartel was killed. Now he has gone out on his own. Described as a ruthless killer - he reportedly won't hesitate to do whatever it takes to scare or beat his competitors - be they law enforcement or other drug cartel, Plumlee said.

Who is Edgar Valdez Villarreal?Noroeste/Redacción Noreste Northwest / Editorial - translated
Headless bodies hung from Mexico bridge - Irish Times

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jacky August 28, 2010 12:26 am (Pacific time)

This truly sick what kind of person would do this over drugs you got to be crazy. they need to get a life a real life some one needs to get them out of this world.

city girl August 28, 2010 12:23 am (Pacific time)

This truly sick what kind of person would do this over drugs you got to be crazy. they need to get a life a real life some one needs to get them out of this world.

Editor: I think drugs are just the tool, it happens over greed and power hungriness.  Thanks for your comment.

Daniel August 25, 2010 5:15 pm (Pacific time)

Kevin I agree the violence has greatly increased under the Mexican war on drugs . The violence is mostly narco vs narco , in the states everyone is the target . The Mexican gangs are moving into the US west coast to grow pot . As I stated the only real solution is decrim both in the states and Mexico .I spent the last winter in Mexico from Mexico city to Cozumel . I personally did not experence any violence nor did I meet anyone who did . I grew up in little italy in New York and back then the mob did not mess with civilians . Now in the states it's some 14 year old blowing away anybody with an auto weapon . Again I state from personal experence for the average person mexico is less violent than the states . For those in the big money drug trade it's a differant story .

Kevin August 25, 2010 9:20 am (Pacific time)

Daniel you wrote " I have also found the street violence much lower than the poverty ridden areas of this country . In Mexico you see old and young people walking on the street at night without the same fear as in this country." Not statistically correct Daniel, just look at the different crime rates between our two countries on a per capita basis. I also have been going to Mexico and other Central American countries for many years, but have quit going to Mexico for over 3 years now. It's violence is spilling deeper in the states and would be a major political issue if the media comprehensively reported on it as they should. It will be a major political issue quite soon, if not before this coming November, certainly before 2012. Are you aware that the cartels have assumed control over large sections of some park areas in both Arizona and New Mexico, and spreading to other states in the west? When we start seeing more Americans killed (we have huge numbers killed already), then expect a militarized border and possibly a domestic quasi-military force to deal with these invaders who are using our wilderness areas. Very unlikely drugs (maybe marijuana) will ever be legalized, so with large profits too be made, the cartels will continue to spread. These Mexican cartels have already eclipsed Columbia in violence and government corruption. They are about to have their waterloo if they continue to spread that level of violence up here. Unfortunately we are about to have our individual freedoms reduced even more because of this situation.

Vic August 25, 2010 8:29 am (Pacific time)

Good points, Daniel. I know that we feel much safer here (Nayarit, Mexico) than we would in Salem or Portland. When my wife walks into town at night, I do not worry at all...we do not lock our doors at night for the most part. The people here are awesome...caring, sharing and very friendly although there is that criminal element that comes with poverty.

carouser August 24, 2010 1:22 pm (Pacific time)

What it must be like for those few lucky residents of Mexico City who travel outside of the city to get away from it all. Packing up the kiddies and heading to Cuernavaca, only to drive, blissfully unaware, of the decapitated men swaying to and fro from the vibrations of the car.

All because ‘America’s Barbie’ wants some of Mexico’s good stuff.  Now that’s globalization.

Hank Ruark August 24, 2010 8:16 pm (Pacific time)

"Anon": Yours makes me wonder who is the pig ? Vic: You sticking with choice of quiet retirement situation ? Even D.C. not so gun-noisy --at least not-yet !!

Vic August 24, 2010 7:09 pm (Pacific time)

Well said, Luke !!

Daniel August 24, 2010 3:25 pm (Pacific time)

Ano I have been going to Mexico for over 40 years and have seen the improvements and the vast increasing problems . Cuernavaca is still a cultural city with world class hotels and museums . Are parts of it over crowded , violent and polluted , they sure are . As poor and problem ridden as Mexico is there is still a great cultural richness of many of its people . I have lived in Mexico's largest cities to smallest towns most of the people are friendly and openhearted . Maybe having a loving heart but living in a poor area or small house makes you a pig , in your eyes , but not mine . I have also found the street violence much lower than the poverty ridden areas of this country . In Mexico you see old and young people walking on the street at night without the same fear as in this country .

Vic August 24, 2010 10:03 am (Pacific time)

Even Nayarit is seeing a big upswing in violence. We are 500 miles from the border, and in the last 5 weeks there have been 4 killings in a town just 12 miles away and another 14 in Tepic, which is 37 miles away, or 20 "as the crow flies". The Mexican Marines opened fire on a truck that did not heed their orders to stop (they had their car stereo cranked), killing two very well liked local men and seriously wounding another. This happened here in San Blas, maybe 20 blocks from our house. Needless to say, the townspeople are furious and I notice the Marines are keeping a low profile and have tightened security around the base. All this in an area usually untouched for the most part by this kind of violence. Still, Multnomah and Clackamas counties (combined) have had more people killed by the police this year than the entire stste of Nayarit has....legalization would help the situation here, but probably not completely..

Anonymous August 24, 2010 8:18 am (Pacific time)

Daniel: Lipstick on a pig narrative by you is pretty obvious.

el huero August 24, 2010 8:05 am (Pacific time)

Mexico has always been a violent country, and now it is only worse. The 'myth' of the peaceful and 'safe' country has finally been revealed to be just that. Calderon deserves great credit for having the huevos to press this war. Would love to see all of the narcos do each other away. Meanwhile, it is time for the U.S. to decriminalize drug use, end the drug war, and provide free treatment for any and all forms of drug addiction. This will put the drug lords out of business within a year or two....for good.

Luke Easter August 24, 2010 7:17 am (Pacific time)

Maybe just maybe the problem lies not with those selling but rather with those buying. You can't sell what nobody buys ala Pontiac and the Edsel. As for drugs being legal, how does a shipment from another country not only get in America but to all 50 states? Surely it's not from anyone at the bottom of the totem pole. It takes a Chief.

Daniel August 23, 2010 4:22 pm (Pacific time)

Yes legalization is the only way out . This was proposed by the last Mexican president Fox this week . Calderon is too locked into this madness to change . He also stoled the election and his been a total disaster for the country . Its a good thing you only get one term in Mexico for president ,altho for 6 long years. Tim this photo is too gruesome to reprint , you should give the viewers a warning . Cuernavaca is a cultured city full of art museums and great houses behind high walls . The crazy raid on the drug lords , with Mexican elite troops dropping into a high rise building in a residential neighborhood with guns blazing inflamed this madness . Calderon used several solders killed in the action as a promo piece for his war . A few days later the narcos killed off the family of the solders . Mexico is facing a great loss in income because of the violence spreading like crazy because of Calderons WAR . Watching troop convoys travel thru Cuernavaca reminded me of a war zone not a beautiful cultural center . When I was there it did not make me feel safer . I was more worried about the young solder riding around with his finger on the trigger of a 50 cal machine gun on top of his vehicle . I was thinking he might hit a bump a wipe out a few dozen civilians .

Anonymous August 23, 2010 2:32 pm (Pacific time)

legalize drugs and this all goes away. Do you: (ie: anyone) use drugs? I think not, would you use drugs if they were legal? No you wouldnt. People who use, or not use drugs, are not going to change because its legal or not. In fact, younger ones, tend to use drugs simply because it is illegal, and they feel they are fighting the establishment. All drugs should be legal, but without the war on drugs, which is a complete failure and a waste of billions, they could not set up their police state. The war on drugs is a joke, especially when the military admits guarding opium fields in Afghanistan, and big banks have been caught laundering the money, and heroin is now flowing into the U.S. cheap and potent. Give me a break on this "war on drugs" bullcrud. Legalize drugs, the drug cartels go away. Altho, until we learn, and understand that the pharmaceutical industry is worse than marijuana, well, here we stand.

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