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Three Americans kidnapped in Mexico freed after a month in captivity

In this Jan. 19, 2015 photo, police officers prepare for an security operation in Ecatepec, a rough neighborhood on the outskirts of Mexico City. Pope Francis will hold the largest public event of his visit to Mexico when he celebrates Mass on an outdoor esplanade in Ecatepec on Feb. 14, 2016. (AP Photo/Eduardo Verdugo)

In this Jan. 19, 2015 photo, police officers prepare for an security operation in Ecatepec, a rough neighborhood on the outskirts of Mexico City. Pope Francis will hold the largest public event of his visit to Mexico when he celebrates Mass on an outdoor esplanade in Ecatepec on Feb. 14, 2016. (AP Photo/Eduardo Verdugo)  (AP)

Three American citizens abducted last month in the northern state of Tamaulipas, across the border from Texas, were rescued by Mexican police in a confrontation in which a suspected kidnapper was killed, authorities said Tuesday.

The Tamaulipas state government said the victims were freed Monday from a criminal band's camp along the highway between Ciudad Victoria and Zaragoza. It said the alleged leader of the band was killed in the operation and two suspects were detained.

It added that the Americans, two women and a man, are members of the same family and are of Mexican descent. The victims were said to be from Dallas and described as in good condition.

They were kidnapped April 13 while driving to a relative's funeral in the central state of San Luis Potosi, and their captors demanded a ransom. The following day U.S. consular officials sought help from Mexican authorities to search for the victims, who were located Monday evening.

The Tamaulipas government said the suspects are under investigation for other abductions along the highway.

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The area is being fought over by two warring factions of the Zetas drug cartel.

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