Vigilante mob sets two men on fire in remote Peru jungle town

Residents in a mining town deep in Peru’s jungle set two men on fire for allegedly attacking three people yesterday. According to daily El Comercio, residents in Bajo Punkiri-Delta Uno-Boca Colorado, in Madre de Dios department, tied the two men to a tree trunk, sprayed them with gasoline and lit them on fire. One man died and the other suffered burns over 80 percent of his body.

Vigilante justice is common in rural Peru where there is little State presence. In August 2007, a mob of 2,000 people forced a father in a remote Andean village to hang his 16-year-old son. The mob accused the teenager of leading a gang of cattle thieves that had killed seven people.

Mobs have also targeted State officials in remote villages. In April 2004, thousands of people in the town of Ilave, in Puno Department, made international headlines when they dragged their mayor, Cirilo Robles, into the street and beat him to death for alleged corruption, for which he was later exonerated.

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