July 6 (UPI) -- The attorney general of Mexico's Chihuahua state said at least 15 people died during a shootout between the Juárez Cartel and drug lord Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman's Sinaloa Cartel.
The Chihuahua Attorney General's Office, or PGR, said the shootout occurred at about 5 a.m. Wednesday in the neighborhood of Las Varas in the city of Madera, which is about 4 hours from the state capital of Chihuahua city.
The PGR said members of La Línea, the armed wing of the Juárez Cartel, fought against members of the Sinaloa Cartel. Fighting also occurred in the nearby Largo Maderal and Mesa del Huracán communities.
Mexican security forces arrested at least three suspects involved and seized 10 vehicles, high-caliber weapons, grenade launchers and grenades. Authorities did not yet reveal the identities of the deceased and whether any civilians were caught in the crossfire.
Chihuahua State Security Commissioner Óscar Alberto Aparicio Avendaño on Wednesday said those involved in the 2-hour shootout include suspects accused of killing two state security officers on June 24.
"These criminals were the ones who cowardly killed two of our agents just weeks ago," Aparicio Avendaño said.
Aparicio Avendaño said investigations are ongoing and a Mexican Federal Police helicopter has been deployed to survey the area and maintain security.
Some officials said authorities believe the shootout occurred when gunmen attempted to rescue a group of detained criminals who were being taken to a hospital, El Universal reported.