The ten alleged drug traffickers slain in western Colombia on Friday may have been involved in a gang war between the “La Empresa” and “Los Urabeños” drug gangs, claimed police on Monday.
The dead men found Friday almost 25 miles outside the Pacific coast city of Buenaventura in the Valle de Cauca department, may have died in a confrontation between the two gangs who are grappling for control of the port city, police told local media.
La Empresa, a gang local to Buenaventura, is fighting for control of the city with the national neo-paramilitary group, Los Urabeños, according to crime website InSight Crime. La Empresa may work for “Los Rastrojos” a national crime syndicate with a strong presence in the Pacific region, according to newspaper El Tiempo.
The victims were stopped at a police checkpoint shortly before their deaths. Authorities were reportedly suspicious of the “well-dressed” men, traveling in luxury armored cars in the early hours of the morning, but found nothing to justify detaining them.
Half of the bodies were found in a resort between Buenaventura and Cali, and the other five were found nearby in vehicles that had been hit by gunfire.