Mexico police search for US tourist after shooting

An American tourist was allegedly shot during an attack on on Falcon Lake.

Nuevo Laredo: Mexican investigators were searching for an American tourist allegedly shot during an attack on a lake on the US border with Mexico last week, an official said.

"We`re investigating but up to now we don`t know the fate of the US citizen," said an official from the northwestern Tamaulipas state attorney general`s office, declining to be named.

The wife of David Michael Hartley told police in the US state of Texas that her husband had been wounded in the attack by armed men on boats as they travelled on jet skis on Falcon Lake last week.

Mexico`s northwestern state of Tamaulipas, one of several violent states neighbouring Texas, has seen a spike in suspected drug attacks in recent months, blamed on a dispute between the powerful Gulf Cartel and its former allies the Zetas.

Two federal police officers and a female passer-by were killed during a shootout between suspected drug gang members in western Mexico, officials said on Monday.

Neither the police nor the woman "had anything to do with the clash between members of organised crime gangs" on Sunday, said an official from the prosecutor`s office in the town of Apatzingan, in Michoacan state.

The woman`s husband said that they had sought protection behind a wall and started walking away when gunfire broke out again and a stray bullet hit the woman in the head.

Authorities had not identified those involved in the shootout.

Michoacan is one of the worst affected states in a wave of drug violence which has left more than 28,000 dead in the past three and a half years, according to official figures.

Investigators on Monday widened a probe into last week`s alleged abduction of 20 tourists from Michoacan in the beach resort of Acapulco, in neighbouring Guerrero state, including possible links to violent drug gangs.

Suspected drug violence has spiralled since President Felipe Calderon launched a military crackdown on organised crime, involving some 50,000 troops, after taking office in 2007.

Bureau Report

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