Mexican authorities release another 16 people kidnapped by criminal groups in Sinaloa state

MEXICO CITY (AP) — Mexican authorities Sunday rescued another 16 people kidnapped by criminal gangs two days earlier in the northern city of Culiacan. Forty-two people were released Saturday amid a wave of violence.

Also on Sunday, a member of Mexico's national guard was killed in the region as he took part in the rescue efforts in the capital of Sinaloa state.

Sinaloa Gov. Rubén Rocha said in his profile on the X platform, formerly known as Twitter, that the number of people released had been updated to 58, including 36 adults and 22 children.

Rocha did not provide details on how and where the 58 people were rescued, but said another eight are still missing.

Sinaloa's public security secretary, Gerardo Mérida, said none of the people released agreed to formally accuse their kidnappers.

Federal authorities sent 600 special forces troops to Sinaloa to search for the missing people. An additional 300 soldiers and a National Guard battalion are also operating in the area.

Prosecutors in Sinaloa said Sunday they opened nine investigations for incidents between Friday and Saturday.

Local authorities have not said who was behind the mass kidnappings, which took place one day after three people were killed in the state’s Badiraguato region.

Culiacan and other cities in the state have been the scenes of violent incidents in recent years, with killings by members of the powerful Sinaloa cartel.

Residents of Culiacan had a difficult time last year after the recapture of Ovidio Guzmán López, one of the sons of Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán. He was extradited to the United States to face a lawsuit for drug dealing and money laundering. Guzmán López' arrest left dozens of deaths in the region.