Dead bodies in Mexico most likely lack American and Australian surfers

The three dead bodies found in the Mexican state of Baja California are most likely the American and two Australian tourists who went missing last week, a senior official in the region said on Saturday. Mexican authorities are carrying out forensic tests after finding the bodies in a well on Friday following a days-long search for Australian brothers Callum, 33, and Jake Robinson, 30, as well as American Carter Rhoad, 30.

The trio was vacationing surfing near the popular tourist town of Ensenada, about 90 minutes south of the U.S.-Mexico border on the Pacific coast. “All three bodies meet the characteristics to indicate with a high probability that they are both the American Carter Rhoad and the Robinson brothers from Australia,” Baja California Attorney General Maria Elena Andrade said.

Andrade said that although the three bodies were found in an advanced state of decomposition at the bottom of a pit more than 50 feet deep, “some physical descriptions give us that high probability.” Baja California is one of the most violent states in Mexico, although the Ensenada area is considered safer. The U.S. Department of State is advising Americans to reconsider travel to the state due to crime and kidnapping.

The three surfers were last seen on April 27 and were reported missing a few days later, when authorities launched a multi-day search with help from the US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). Three people have been arrested so far, officials say. A burnt-out vehicle believed to have been used by the three surfers was also found in the area.

Mexican authorities’ preliminary hypothesis is that the arrested individuals tried to carjack the foreigners and when the surfers resisted, they were shot and their bodies dumped in a well, Andrade said. A fourth male body was discovered in the well, although that corpse had been there longer and is not believed to be connected to this case, Andrade added.

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