There were five in August in Lagos de Moreno, Jalisco. Seven boys kidnapped in September in Malpaso (Zacatecas). There are six bodies of young people that the Guanajuato Prosecutor’s Office has recovered this week, and at least five of them belong to the Latin University of Mexico. They were between 18 and 23 years old. They studied medicine. Pablo Fabián Orozco Mateos was just starting out. His brother Jesús Virgilio was graduating in January. His cousin, Pedro Mateos Puente, was already in the seventh semester. Along with them, their friends Bryan Jesús Amoles Gasca and José Eduardo Freire Ortega. Luis Giovanni Juárez has also been identified among the victims. They found their bodies in Celaya, behind the University of Guanajuato with “signs of violence”, the marks of bullets. The student community of the bloodiest state in Mexico is in mourning.
Last Sunday, the friends returned from Querétaro. Around two in the afternoon they spoke with their parents, they announced their return. The geolocation of their cell phones placed them in the town of Santa Rosa de Lima, according to Millennium. It is not known whether they were forced or of their own free will, nor whether they were able to take their phones after the crime. Around 6:30 p.m., 911 received a report that a vehicle with bodies inside had been located on the dirt road known as El Salitre, which leads to the First Fraction of Crespo, south of Celaya.
The National Guard arrived first and reported that there were five young boys inside the car. They were Pedro, Fabián, Jesús, Eduardo and Giovanni, as reported by the Guanajuato Prosecutor’s Office to EL PAÍS. The next day, a sixth body was located in some bushes, a few meters from where the rest were found. It was Bryan’s, as the Prosecutor’s Office stated to this newspaper. He also had gunshot wounds; shell casings were still around him. The agency reported late Tuesday on the identification of Luis Giovanni, of whom they point out that he was not a student, but about whom more information has not yet been released. He is among the boys’ Facebook friends.
When they were found in the vicinity of the Celaya-Salvatierra campus of the University of Guanajuato, rumors soon broke out about whether they were students of that study center. But, on Monday, the Latin University issued a statement in which it regretted the death of five of its students and demanded justice from the authorities. It was the educational center that communicated the boys’ specialties. Jesús and Bryan were studying Surgery, they were in the ninth semester, they were going to graduate in January. Pedro and Eduardo were going to be pediatricians. The youngest of them all, Fabián, was still beginning what they call Phase I. “They were happy and very talented young people, and within the university, with precise academic achievement,” commented the rector Carlos José Lemus.
Fabián and Virgilio were brothers. Children of the former director of the DIF (Comprehensive Family Development) of Guanajuato and former councilor of the PAN, Fabiola Mateos, and the notary, who also worked in the public defender’s office, Virgilio Orozco. His cousin Pedro’s father was also a civil servant, employed at the Drinking Water and Public Sewer Board (Jumapa) of Celaya and later in Urban Development. Little is known beyond his family ties.
Jesús was one of the first Mexicans who started talking about soccer on Tiktok, where he was known as “El Pana Mathews” and who cries for him today. He was 23 years old, he was an absolute fan of Real Madrid and Cristiano Ronaldo. He went to America. On his Facebook account, Pedro boasts of friends and family. His two brothers, who star in his profile and cover photo, Ana and Carlos, also graduated as doctors from the Universidad Latina. His last post says: “Stay close to people who are like rays of sunshine.” This Tuesday, his best friend led the protest over his death: “My best friend is missing! I love you, Pedro,” said the sign in the hands of a boy with a cap, glasses and a face mask, who was crying and presiding over the march.
This Tuesday, his colleagues came out to ask for justice for his death to the municipal presidency of Celaya. On the posters: “If they kill their future doctors, who will take care of them?” “They were childhood friends, it seems very unfair to me, one feels very great helplessness. “We all know what is happening in Celaya and that much more is needed, it is not done and it is from years ago,” he told Millennium one of the victims’ schoolmates. Celaya is considered one of the most dangerous cities in Mexico. In March, six women, aged between 19 and 42, were kidnapped at the same time in the city. Their charred bodies were found days later.
In this case all the authorities have come out quickly. The governor of Guanajuato, Diego Sinhue, has written on his social networks: “In light of the condemnable events that occurred in the Laja-Bajío region, where the lives of five young people have been cowardly taken, I have instructed the state security institutions to implement an exhaustive operation. “With the support of federal and municipal agencies to reinforce security in the region and find those responsible as soon as possible, these acts will not go unpunished.” Along the same lines, the mayor of Celaya, Javier Mendoza, who has asked the Prosecutor’s Office in a video to “work at forced marches, to bring to justice those who perpetrated this cunning and cowardly crime.”
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