MEXICO CITY – Prosecutors are still trying to determine how the young people who disappeared from a Mexico City bar last week left the establishment, Federal District Attorney Rodolfo Rios said.
“The majority of the young people arrived at the bar in automobiles, a compact car and a taxi. That is what we know as of now,” the DA said in a press conference held after a nearly three-hour meeting with the victims’ relatives on Tuesday.
The young people were led away from the Heavens After bar in Mexico City’s Zona Rosa tourist district by gunmen on May 26, relatives and a young man who managed to escape said.
The victims, who were employed and liked to spend time at the bar, were led away from the establishment by men dressed in black who identified themselves as police officers, relatives said.
The victims’ relatives were shown footage from security cameras that confirmed the young people arrived at the bar, Rios said.
“We are still analyzing the departure to see how they were … how they left the place,” the DA said in response to a question from reporters.
An arrest warrant was obtained and served on three people who may be linked to the disappearance of the 12 young people, Rios said.
Both relatives and officials had been saying that 11 people were missing.
The suspects – two men and a woman – were taken to the holding facility at the DA’s office.
Residents of Tepito, the Mexico City neighborhood that the missing youths came from, have staged a series of protests to demand action by officials.
The group may have been taken away by drug cartel members, who often abduct targeted individuals and do not demand ransom, dumping victims’ bodies at some location a few days later, relatives said.
One of the missing youths is Jerry Ortiz Ponce, a 16-year-old boy whose jailed father, Jorge Ortiz Reyes, is one of the leaders of the La Union gang, media reports said.
Ortiz Reyes is still running the criminal organization from prison, media reports said.
A rival gang may have staged the kidnapping to settle a score with La Union following the killing of a drug dealer in Mexico City two days before the youths disappeared, press reports said.
Mexico City Mayor Miguel Angel Mancera, however, said large drug cartels were not operating in the capital.
“We have not detected any trace of this,” the mayor said in response to questions from reporters. EFE