Nine young people were kidnapped in different parts of the southern Mexican state of Guerrero, where a wave of violent crime has persisted despite the deployment of army soldiers and Federal Police, police sources said.

Six people were abducted Tuesday by an armed group that burst into a motorcycle shop located within a school zone in Chilpancingo, the state capital, the sources told EFE.

The assailants vandalized the establishment before forcing the victims into a white vehicle and taking them away.

State and federal police forces launched an operation in the area but have not yet located the victims or their captors.

The police spokespersons added that no family member had come forward to report the disappearance of any of the young people, whose identities have not been revealed.

Elsewhere, three youths were kidnapped under similar circumstances Tuesday in the municipality of Tixtla, where the Ayotzinapa Normal School, an all-male teacher-training institute, is located.

In September 2014, 43 students enrolled in that institution went missing in the nearby city of Iguala after coming under attack by local police.

The Rojos and Ardillos criminal gangs have been fighting a turf war in Tixtla and also have carried out attacks against members of a community police force that have been providing security in that municipality in recent months.

Hundreds of people have been killed in Guerrero, one of Mexico’s most violent states, since the disappearance of the 43 trainee teachers 16 months ago. EFE