Search continues for two Australian and one American surfer missing in Mexico

PLAYAS DE TIJUANA, Mexico: Mexican authorities said Friday they have stepped up the search for two Australians and an American who went missing last week while surfing in an area plagued by cartel violence.

Australian brothers Jake and Callum Robinson and their American friend Jack Carter have not been seen since April 27.

They were vacationing near the coastal town of Ensenada in the northwestern state of Baja California.

But the brothers’ mother, Debra Robinson, said in her Facebook post that they never arrived at their intended accommodation.

The search continues for two Australian and one American surfers

According to City Hall, navy personnel took part in the search, along with officials from the public prosecutor’s office, who requested the assistance of firefighters in searching the reef in the area.

A prosecutor’s office source said no human remains were found, contrary to media reports that three bodies had been discovered in the area.

Baja California state authorities said Thursday that three Mexican nationals were being questioned in connection with the disappearances.

“A white pickup truck and other evidence were found,” the prosecutor’s office said in a statement.

The investigation was coordinated with the US Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Australian and US consulates, it added.

Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese called the disappearance “truly disturbing.”

“We certainly hope that these brothers will be found safe, but there is great concern that they are missing,” he told Australian television.

Known for its attractive beaches, Baja California is also one of the most violent states in Mexico thanks to organized crime groups.

In November 2015, two other Australian surfers, Dean Lucas and Adam Coleman, were murdered and their bodies burned while hiking in the northwestern Mexican state of Sinaloa.

Meanwhile, the FBI said three bodies have been found in Baja California, Mexico, near an area where two Australians and an American went missing during a surfing trip last week.

“We confirm that three deceased individuals have been located in Santo Tomas, Baja California,” the FBI’s San Diego office said in a statement without revealing the identities of the victims.