A Mexican gang killed three students and then dissolved their bodies in acid after mistaking them for rivals, according to prosecutors.
Javier Salomon Aceves, 25, Jesus Daniel Diaz, 20, and Marco Garcia Avalos, 20, who attended the University of Audiovisual Media, were kidnapped in Tonala, Guadalajara, after their car broke down last month.
Jalisco state prosecutors said they were tortured before they were killed.
A lead investigator also claimed they initially beat one student to death and then decided they ‘had to execute the other two’.
‘Subsequently their bodies were dissolved in acid so that no trace of them remained,’ the state prosecutor’s office said.
It added the youths were confused with members of another gang by gunmen from the Jalisco New Generation Cartel (CJNG), which has become the most powerful in Mexico, according to US authorities.
An unnamed official also said investigators were analysing more human remains found on the premises of the building where the young men were dissolved.
The disappearance of the three friends had led to huge protests in Guadalajara, which were led by their families.
More than 25,000 people were murdered last year in Mexico, with homicides hit their highest level in records going back 20 years.