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Crime Reporter Shot, Killed in Mexican Border City

A Mexican newspaper based near the U.S. border reports that armed men shot and killed one of its crime reporters as he left for work Thursday.

"El Diario" reported that unknown gunmen shot Armando Rodriguez in his car in Ciudad Juarez as he prepared to take his daughter to school. The motive for the killing was not known.

A recent series of drug-related violence has left at least seven people dead in the northern border city.

Police said Monday that a burned and mutilated body was dumped in front of a police station. Authorities say police later found two men and two women shot to death outside a medical clinic.

The Associated Press reported that a woman's body was found in a trash bag, while a bystander was killed in a car crash caused by a police chase.

Mexico has been hit by a brutal crime wave as drug gangs step up attacks against rival gangs and police.

More than 4,000 people have died this year in violence connected to criminal gangs in Mexico.

On Monday, Mexican President Felipe Calderon named a former federal lawmaker, Fernando Gomez Mont, to replace Interior Minister Juan Camilo Mourino, who died in a plane crash last week in Mexico City.

Mourino was a central figure in Mr. Calderon's government and helped lead a campaign against mounting violence by drug cartels.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and AP.