The U.S. ambassador to Mexico says U.S. authorities have arrested a Mexican man suspected of taking part in the rapes and murders of at least 10 women in the Ciudad Juarez border area near Texas. The arrest is being described as a "major break" in the case.

Ambassador Antonio Garza said in a statement Thursday that Edgar Alvarez Cruz was arrested Tuesday in Denver, Colorado for violating U.S. immigration law. Garza says the suspect is believed to be part of a gang of men who raped and murdered the women between 1993 and 2003.

Mexico's attorney general, Daniel Cabeza de Vaca, told reporters investigators do not know the exact number of homicides Alvarez Cruz may have been responsible for, but that there is solid evidence in several cases with which they are familiar.

Hundreds of women have been brutally murdered in recent years in Ciudad Juarez, located just across the border from the southwestern city of El Paso, Texas. Many of the victims were sexually assaulted.

Ambassador Garza says Alvarez Cruz was being transferred to a federal facility in El Paso and was expected to be turned over to Mexican authorities Friday.

Some information for this report was provided by AP.