Remains of five more victims of Mexican Mormon killings are buried

Rancho La Mora (México) (AFP) –


The remains of a Mormon woman and her four children murdered in northern Mexico were taken by road Friday from their home village to be buried in a family plot in Chihuahua state.

A convoy of vehicles bearing the coffins of Rhonita Miller and her children left Rancho la Mora, in the border area between Mexico's violent northern states of Sonora and Chihuahua, for the family's burial plot in the LeBaron neighborhood in nearby Galeana.

Miller and her children died with four other people in a hail of bullets Monday on a rural road in the lawless region. All had dual US-Mexican citizenship.

Four of the victims were buried in the first of the funerals on Thursday.

Mexican investigators say the victims, three women and six children, could have been mistaken for rivals of a drug trafficking cartel called La Linea.

But relatives -- who have campaigned against the criminal groups that have taken over the area -- insist the attack was deliberate.

"It was not an attack on us, but there is confusion -- someone is wanting to send a message and they used our family," said Adrian LeBaron, Miller's father.

On Thursday, relatives and friends of the Mormon community from various parts of the United States attended the funeral service for Dawna Langford and her two children.

Langford, 43, was buried along with her sons Trevor, 11, and Rogan, two.

The attack happened on an isolated dirt road in a region known for turf wars between drug cartels fighting over lucrative trafficking routes to the United States.

Eight children managed to escape, six of them wounded. One 13-year-old boy helped the younger ones hide, then walked 22 kilometers (14 miles) home to get help.

The families involved -- the Langfords, Millers and LeBarons -- are part of a large group of US Mormons who emigrated to Mexico in the late 19th century, fleeing persecution for their traditions, including polygamy.