The bound and blindfolded body of the kidnapped mayor of Santiago in Mexico has been found dumped on a remote rural road.
The country’s President Felipe Calderon has condemned what he called the “cowardly assassination”.
Thirty-eight-year-old American-educated Edelmiro Cavazos was taken from his home by up to 15 gunmen last Sunday night after he returned from attending a public function in the town’s main square.
Security forces believe Cavazos was targeted because of his efforts to tackle corruption in the Santiago police force.
The abduction followed a weekend of violence in the nearby city of Monterrey when gangs blockaded 13 major road links and a bomb was detonated outside the studios of Mexico’s biggest television network.
The northern state of Nuevo Leon has seen a sharp increase in violent crime since one of the country’s most notorious drug gangs, Los Zetas, became locked in a turf war with a rival cartel.