CANCUN, Mexico – Gunmen killed eight people and wounded two others early Wednesday in Bacalar, a town in the southeastern Mexican state of Quintana Roo, state prosecutors said.
The victims were traveling in an SUV with tags from Yucatan state when they were stopped by the gunmen and shot, the Quintana Roo Attorney General’s Office said.
The two wounded people were transported to a hospital in Bacalar, where security has been tightened by authorities.
The emergency call center received the first call about the shooting at 7:00 am, the AG’s office said.
The shooting occurred on a road between the town of Limones and the city of Felipe Carrillo Puerto.
The area is close to the intersection outside the Chacchoben archaeological site, located barely one kilometer (0.62 miles) outside Limones, a town within the city limits of Bacalar, which is popular with tourists.
On Monday, the Defense Secretariat reported the discovery in the same area of a plane that entered Mexican airspace without authorization.
Soldiers seized 200 kilos of illegal drugs with a street value of more than 47 million pesos ($2.46 million) being smuggled in the plane.
Army troops also seized two rifles, four handguns, four ammunition clips and 300 rounds of ammunition.
Quintana Roo, one of the most important states for Mexico’s tourism industry, has been dealing with a wave of drug-related violence since 2017.
In Quintana Roo, according to official reports, at least five gangs have been fighting for control of drug sales, focusing mainly on Cancun and Playa del Carmen.
The rise in violence in the resort cities, where shootouts and gangland hits have occurred, has driven tourists away.