As Honduras authorities unearth what they suspect to be as many 25 bodies at a mass grave on the Caribbean coast, the police blamed the MS-13, and said the gang could have three more mass graves in the region.
La Tribuna reports that officials from the Honduras' National Directorate of Criminal Investigation (known by its Spanish acronym DNIC) are searching for the other graves near where the police say members of the gang Mara Salvatrucha (MS-13) operate.
The first grave was found on January 14 after residents of Grant, a village near Tela, in the Atlantida state, reported that several young people had gone missing.
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The discovery comes just days after the military and police arrived to relieve close to 80 police officers from multiple agencies in Tela. Officials cited police ineffectiveness and public insecurity.
While no connection has been drawn between the suspension of local authorities and the subsequent discovery of a mass grave, this news -- taken with the November assassination attempt on a congressman in Tela and the January 17 murder of a lawyer in Tela -- suggest the security situation in this part of Honduras may be worsening.