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Trans Woman Tortured to Death, Her Body Dumped in a Canal

Caution tape in Spanish
Via Shutterstock

At least 65 trans people have been killed in Mexico this year. 


Saray Atenea, 31, was killed and her body thrown in a canal that officials say is often used by organized crime figures.

Authorities say her body showed signs of torture when it was found in the body of water running through Lo de Villa, which is a town in the western Mexico state of Colima. The area Atenea's body was found is known by locals as "death row." Threatening messages were found near her body, according to the LGBTQ+ outlet Presentes.

"You have left great pain in the family," a relative posted on social media. "Your family has always accepted you and gave you a lot of love. Thank you for being that incomparable aunt who taught us that being different does not define you as a person. On the contrary, it gives a little more joy to your life."

Atenea's death the fifth trans killing in the area this year, the outlet noted. A local human rights activist, Marco Antonio Gaspar, said that the bodies of other trans people have been found there. He's been collecting data on violence against LGBTQ+ people in the state, including gruesome killings that have taken place. Atenea's death is just the latest.

At least 65 trans people have been killed by violence this year in Mexico, meaning it's one of the deadliest countries to be trans in the world.

Local journalist Roberto Macias told Presentes that Atenea was about to celebrate her 32nd birthday.

LGBTQ+ rights group Dissident Pride said that Atenea's killing is an example of how drug trafficking and police failings lead to increase violence against LGBTQ+ people.

"The news fills us with pain and anger," the group wrote on Instagram on Sunday.

"We demand justice from the Attorney General's Office of the State of Colima for all those murdered. And to the state government, a real change in the security strategy that is killing us."

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