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US Consulate employee found dead with 9 gunshot wounds in Mexico

A Border Patrol vehicle sits along the border fenceline separating San Diego and Tijuana Mexico watching for illegal crossings in March 2016. The border fence between San Diego and Mexico is a deterrent to illegal immigration, drug smuggling and human trafficking. The fence is regularly patrolled by U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents on the lookout for illegal crossings. (Donna Burton/Customs and Border Protection)
October 08, 2020

A missing U.S. Consulate was found dead in a field by Tijuana police southeast of the city in an area known as Rancho las Uvas last weekend.

Edgar Flores Santos was working out of the American Consulate in Tijuana as an agricultural, crops and animal expert and was reported missing on September 30. Investigators initially reported that his body had been found with signs of trauma and “suspicious injuries,” but on Monday afternoon they confirmed that Flores Santos had been shot nine times with different caliber weapons, Fox 5 in San Diego reported.

Flores Santos’ consulate-issued work truck, which he had taken into a remote area to gather and collect insect samples from previously-laid traps, was found at the scene of the crime.

One person has been arrested for allegedly attempting to hide Flores Santos’ body, but no other suspects have been arrested.

In response to Flores Santos’ death, the U.S. Consulate issued a statement expressing their condolences.

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“The community of the U.S. Consulate of the United States in Tijuana deeply laments reports of the death of one of our local employees, a member of the Agricultural Department involved in the sanitary inspections of plants and animals with the office in Tijuana,” the statement said. “We are awaiting official confirmation, and we’ll continue working with local authorities investigating the case, out of respect for the family we will have no further comment.”

According to Fox 5, Flores Santos was a Mexican national working for the U.S. Consulate. The city of Tijuana also offered their condolences, saying, “The city of Tijuana laments this incident, and we reiterate our support for our neighboring country with whom we’ll maintain a direct and constant line of communication throughout our administration.”

Christopher Landau, U.S. Ambassador to Mexico, took to Twitter and said, “US Mission Mexico is mourning the loss of Flores Santos and that the mission is grateful for his service.”

Landau said that Flores Santos work “advanced food safety” in Mexico and the United States, adding, “We offer our sincere condolences to his loved ones and will work with law enforcement until he and his family receive justice.”

According to the U.S. State Department’s Overseas Security Advisory Council, the city of Tijuana has the highest per capita murder rate in the world. In 2019, Tijuana had 2,208 homicides, compared to 2,519 in 2018. Tijuana also has the highest rate of femicides, the intentional killing of females because they are females, in Mexico.