11 more bodies found in Mexican coastal state

Story highlights

  • The discovery comes after 35 dead bodies were found in the same state
  • Top judicial officials meet near the site where 35 corpses were abandoned
  • An official blames the death of the 35 on a drug dealing dispute
  • Mexico's attorney general pledges that "cowardly actions" will not go unpunished
Eleven more bodies were found in the Mexican coastal state of Veracruz Thursday, days after 35 bodies were found on a busy road in the same area, the state-run Notimex news agency reported.
The bodies were spotted Thursday evening in four different locations, the agency reported.
This grisly discovery comes as authorities were still trying to get more information on the 35 bodies found Tuesday in two trucks near a shopping mall in the municipality of Boca del Rio.
The dead included 12 women and 23 men.
On Thursday, Mexico´s attorney general said the killing of the 35 people stemmed from a drug-dealing dispute.
"The effects of this illicit activity are not only seen reflected in the poisoning of our society, but it is also the motor generating the violence," Attorney General Marisela Morales told a meeting of state prosecutors and judges.
The high-ranking officials met in Boca del Rio, Veracruz.
"The state cannot, must not and never will allow these types of cowardly actions to go unpunished," she said, describing the distribution of drugs as the "driving force" behind violence in cities throughout Mexico.
Veracruz Gov. Javier Duarte, who opened Thursday´s meeting alongside Morales, noted that all the victims had criminal backgrounds -- a point authorities have repeatedly stressed since their investigation began Tuesday.
He said criminals have two possible paths to follow: prison or death.
"Those who choose badly end badly," Duarte said. "In the end, crime pays badly."
Mexico's federal government Wednesday released a statement describing the killings as a "barbaric act."
Two minors and a local police officer who had been reported missing was among the dead, Veracruz Attorney General Reynaldo Escobar Perez said.
Authorities had uncovered some details about vehicles involved after examining security camera footage, but were still searching for suspects.
Boca del Rio is in Veracruz state's most populated area. It has become a frequent site of clashes between armed groups as drug-related violence grows.
Government figures indicate that more than 34,600 people have been killed in drug-related violence since Mexican President Felipe Calderon began a crackdown on cartels in December 2006. Other reports estimate that more than 40,000 have died. The latest government figures were released in January.