Published On: Mon, Dec 7th, 2015

Three arrests made in murders of two Australian surfers in Sinaloa

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NAVOLATO, Sinaloa — Three arrests have been made in connection with the murder of two tourists whose bodies were discovered in a van November 21 in Sinaloa, and suspected to be those of two missing Australians.

State Attorney General Marco Antonio Higuera said undercover agents last week apprehended three men suspected of passing themselves off as police officers and stopping and robbing motorists on the Mexico-Nogales highway.

One of those arrested, Julio César Muñiz, was carrying a 357 magnum which has been identified as the gun used to shoot at least one of the two men in the van.

Julio César and Martín Rogelio Muñiz were found in possession of a Jeep Cherokee in which police found five firearms, ammunition, computers, and fake police uniforms. A third man was also arrested and two others are being sought in connection with the case.

The three in custody have confessed to shooting two men in a van on the night of November 20, the same night that two Australian surfers disappeared while driving a van from Topolobampo to Guadalajara.

The suspects preyed on drivers on a stretch of the highway in the municipality of Navolato, mounting an emergency light on their vehicle and dressing as police officers.

Photo: The murders of two Austrailian surfers (upper right) in Sinaloa so far has led to three arrests (including two men at left).

The murders of two Austrailian surfers (upper right) in Sinaloa so far has led to three arrests (including two men at left).

At about 12:30am November 21, images of the two Australians were captured by security cameras in a convenience store in Los Mochis, where they had stopped for directions, according to a store employee.

Security cameras picked up their van at 12:57 when it left Los Mochis and once more at the Las Brisas toll booth almost an hour and a half later.

Soon after, they were pulled over by the gang of highway robbers who have confessed that a long-haired occupant of the van, believed to be Adam Coleman, resisted when the “officers” attempted to lead him to their vehicle.

Muñoz shot him in the face with a 357 magnum and then killed the second man, presumed to be Dean Lucas. The two were put in the back of their van which was then driven to a backroad in the community of El Tigre where their captors shot them again and set fire to the van.

Higuera was hopeful that DNA tests would be concluded soon to confirm the identity of the charred bodies in the van, which were found the following morning. The van has been confirmed as the one in which the Australians were traveling.

They were en route from Edmonton, Canada in search of surfing waves and to meet up with Coleman’s girlfriend, Andrea Gómez, in Guadalajara.


– Source:

With information from: El Universal (sp), (en)

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