March 31, 2016 / 1:19 AM / a year ago

Military judge clears soldiers over alleged gang shootout

A relative of soldiers accused of homicide holds a sign during a protest against the government in Mexico City October 11, 2014.Bernardo Montoya

MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - A military judge absolved six of seven soldiers implicated in the killing of 22 gang members in a shootout about two years ago, according to court records released on Wednesday.

The gang members were allegedly killed following a confrontation with the army in June of 2014 in Tlatlaya, on the southern fringes of the central State of Mexico.

The military court acquitted the troops in October because they showed they were responding to an attack, according to the court documents, released by the human rights group Centro Prodh.

The seventh soldier was convicted of disobedience and has already served a year in military prison.

Three of the soldiers still remain behind bars pending a civil homicide case against them.

The Inter-American Commission for Human Rights has also called on Mexico to investigate supposed extrajudicial killings, citing a separate shootout last May which killed 42 suspected gang members and one federal police officer.

Reporting by Lizbeth Diaz, writing by Anna Yukhananov; Editing by Bernard Orr

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