At least six people were killed and four injured during clashes between armed alleged gang members at an indoor football match in Guatemala, police said, in the latest mass violence at sporting events in Latin America.
The bloodshed, which occurred Saturday night in Villa Canales, a town on the southeastern outskirts of the capital Guatemala City, left five people dead at the scene while a sixth died after being taken by firefighters to a nearby hospital.
According to an investigation report, the armed attack could have been caused “by rivalry between antagonistic gangs,” especially the Barrio 18 and the Mara Salvatrucha, which have a strong presence in Guatemala and other Central American countries, Mexico and the United States.
Witnesses said the attackers arrived in a vehicle and that they included at least “four individuals with firearms,” the report stated. The attackers fled after the killings.
Violence in Guatemala leaves some 3,500 dead each year, one of the highest rates in Latin America, mainly due to drug trafficking and gang activity, according to authorities.
Violence has broken out repeatedly this year at Latin American football venues.
On March 5 there were savage clashes between fans outside a stadium in Colombia.
On the same night a mass brawl at a game in Mexico left 26 people seriously injured, while the next day a man was shot dead in a confrontation between football fans in Brazil.