The mutilated body of a photographer from the Mexican daily newspaper Vanguardia has been found along with that of another man, in the north—eastern city of Saltillo.

The newspaper on Thursday blamed the authorities in the state of Coahuila, of which Saltillo is the capital, for labelling the two men as members of organised crime gangs “without an investigation or any evidence, not even testimonies”. Photographer Daniel Alejandro Martinez Bazaldua (22) had been working for the daily for a month. He was at the Vanguardia office on Tuesday but did not make it to cover an assignment three hours later.

The other victim was identified as an engineering student. The state’s allegations were made based on signs left by the bodies. The killers appeared to make specific references to the two men as deserters from a gang.

“In shock, this publisher regrets the brutality of the violence that is currently shaking Mexico and the response shown so far by the state government,” Vanguardia said.

Saltillo is about 850 km north of Mexico City. Mexico is regarded as one of the most dangerous countries to work as a journalist. Some 27 journalists were killed during the administration of President Felipe Calderon between 2006-12. — DPA