Mexicans have been scandalized by the release of surveillance video showing seven uniformed police officers taking custody of three men who were later found dead.

The cops seen in the video were themselves arrested last week, the spokesman for the Jalisco state Attorney General's Office told Efe on Friday.

The officers have already admitted links to criminals and could face charges for homicide, Lino Gonzalez said.

The images were captured the night of Jan. 20 by security cameras at a hotel in Lagos de Moreno, Jalisco, where the three men were staying.

Jalisco Attorney General Tomas Coronado Olmos released the tape on Tuesday.

The men, handcuffed and wearing only their underwear, are loaded onto a police vehicle by the cops, who appear to be taking direction from three other civilians also seen on the video.

The men were found dead hours later inside a van belonging to one of them.

The victims, all residents of the northern state of Coahuila, had traveled to Lagos de Moreno on business, Gonzalez said.

Prior to the night of their abduction, the visitors were briefly detained by Lagos de Moreno police for drinking in public, the AG's office spokesman said.

While few in Mexico are surprised to see police collude with criminals, the behavior documented by the surveillance video has struck many as unusually brazen. EFE