While searching for seven missing call center workers, investigators uncovered 45 bags full of human body parts.
The gruesome discovery came after workers at two different call centers were reported missing over the course of two days last week.
While searching for the missing workers, police received a tip that they might be able to find evidence in a hard-to-reach area of the city of Zapopan.
The area in question was a gorge about 40 meters deep, which was accessed with the help of search and rescue teams and a helicopter from the Zapopan Civil Protection and Fire Brigade.
In the gorge, they found about 45 plastic bags containing human body parts. Forensic scientists and coroners are currently working to determine exactly how many people were disposed of in the bags.
“At this time, it cannot be determined with certainty whether the remains found in the area are those of the seven call center workers who disappeared in Zapopan last week,” the Jalisco state attorney’s office said on Wednesday.
The next day, investigators found the bodies “matched the physical characteristics of some of the youths missing from the call center.”
The seven call center workers disappeared from the Jardines Vallarta and La Estancia neighborhoods of Guadalajara between May 20 and 22.
According to the authorities, all the missing workers were between 20 and 30 years old. Days later, an eighth person was also reported missing, who Jalisco police believe is linked to the group.
Among them was an American citizen – Carlos Valladolid, a 23-year-old Arizona native who worked in one of the call centers, the Daily Mail reported.
Valladolid was living in Jalisco with his sister, Mexican national Itzel Valladolid, 27, who is also among the missing associates.
While searching for the call centers for the missing employees, investigators uncovered an operation they believe was targeting elderly Americans, Mexico’s El País newspaper reported.
At the call centers, police confiscated hard drives, marijuana, a plaque listing foreign names and a red-dyed mop they believe was used to mop up blood.
Residents near the call center also told investigators they occasionally saw gunmen in the building.
The operation had “all the hallmarks of organized crime,” said Jalisco prosecutor Luis Joaquín Méndez.
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