Sept. 26 (UPI) -- Federal and state authorities in Mexico have disarmed the city of Acapulco's entire police force as they investigate possible ties to drug gangs.
The Guerrero Coordination Group, a joint operation of Mexican state and federal departments, including the National Secretary of Defense, the Marines, federal police, the state prosecutors opffice, and state police conducted the seizure, the group's spokesman Roberto Alvarez Heredia told CNN.
Two police commanders were arrested on homicide charges, the group's statement said. Acapulco's chief of highway police was also detained after he was found carrying unauthorized weapons.
Escalating crime in the resort city and the "nonexistent response of the municipal police to the phenomenon" sparked the decision to disarm local police, the coordination group said in a statement to The New York Times.
The homicide rate in Acapulco rose to 106 homicides per 100,000 inhabitants last year, one of the highest rates in the world.
In January, the U.S. State Department prohibited government employees from traveling to Acapulco and the surrounding Guerrero state.
The military intervention took place five days before a new mayor, Adela Roman, was set to take office.