From The Times Online:
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She was yet another desolate victim of the endless drug wars ravaging the northern Mexican borderlands, one of more than 2,600 people murdered in Ciudad Juarez last year. When police found her body in a residential area close to the Rio Grande river, there were two distinctive signs that she had been caught up in the bloodsoaked feuding between the rival Juarez and Sinaloa cartels.
First, her head had been crudely hacked off — a trademark cartel warning to rivals. Second, her torso bore a distinctive tattoo of a cackling skeleton dressed in suggestive female clothing.
Police recognised it at once as Santa Muerte — best translated as Saint Death, a macabre feminine icon who has replaced the Virgin Mary as an improbable source of unholy comfort to Mexico’s legions of gangsters and hitmen.
“If you revere her and are faithful to her, she might look after you.