2 Dead in Shootout Between Rival Mexican Gangs

A shootout between rival drug gangs and police left two dead and another wounded Friday in the western state of Michoacan.

The early morning shootout tore through an upscale neighborhood in the state capital of Morelia. Hundreds of police swarmed the area, killing one gunman who tried to resist capture, state police said.

Another man was found dead after the shootout, presumably killed in fighting between the two drug gangs. A Honduran woman was wounded in the confrontation.

Hundreds of rounds were fired and several grenades thrown in the three-way shootout, which lasted more than three hours and ended at dawn.

Police evacuated about 50 people from their homes as authorities searched rooftops for the gunmen. At least three gunmen were detained in a house identified as a cartel hideaway. Police also found weapons caches and several tables presumably used by the cartels to torture kidnapping victims.

Also in Michoacan, the bodies of three men were found in plastic bags Friday on the side of a highway near the city of Uruapan by a passer-by. All three were bound, blindfolded, tortured and shot in the head, state police said.

In Tijuana, the Mexican army announced the capture of a drug cartel suspect in an upscale neighborhood. The suspect, Eduardo Morquecho Hernandez, was found at a house with 1,500 pounds of marijuana, 32 guns and bags caustic soda, a chemical frequently used to dissolve the bodies of drug gang victims, according to the Army's second regional command.

Morquecho Hernandez is accused of worked for Tijuana drug lord Fernando Sanchez Arellano, known as "The Engineer," and was being held on suspicion of drug trafficking and other possible charges.

In the Gulf state of Veracruz, a man was shot to death in Boca del Rio and another was found tortured and killed inside a car trunk on Thursday in the state capital.

Also in Veracruz state, the body of a 9-year-old boy kidnapped in late June was found Friday morning in the city of Jaltipan.

Juan Enrique Espinoza was kidnapped on June 25 as he left school. Police have arrested five people suspected in the kidnapping, including a neighbor, authorities said. The kidnappers demanded roughly $40,000 in ransom.