At least six suspected Jalisco Nueva Generacion drug cartel members died in a shootout with police in the western state of Jalisco, leading the gang to block roads, the Federal Police said Sunday.
Three federal law enforcement agents were wounded in Saturday's shootout and taken to a hospital in Guadalajara, the capital of Jalisco, the agency said.
Nemesio Oseguera, the cartel's leader, was arrested in the operation, unconfirmed media reports said.
Cartel enforcers closed at least 22 roads in Jalisco after the shootout, the Federal Police said.
Gunmen used vehicles to block streets across the Guadalajara metropolitan area and in nearby cities, setting 35 vehicles on fire, Jalisco Government Secretary Victor Manuel Gonzalez said.
Five more roads were reported blocked in the early morning hours in the cities of Ixtlahuacan, La Barca, Jamay, Zapotlan del Rey and Tototlan, but state officials have not confirmed these reports.
Roads were blocked in Jalisco and neighboring Colima state to "complicate the work of authorities," the Federal Police said.
Officers seized four rocket launchers, 10 firearms, ammunition clips and 15 fragmentation grenades at the scene of the shootout, the Federal Police said.
The coroner's office, where the bodies of the gunmen were taken, is being guarded by army troops and Federal Police officers.
The Jalisco Nueva Generacion organization was created following the death of Ignacio "Nacho" Coronel, a top Sinaloa drug cartel boss killed by the army in 2010.
Jalisco Nueva Generacion has been fighting Los Zetas, considered Mexico's most violent drug cartel, for control of smuggling routes into the United States.
The violence has spiked this month in Mexico, with the Mexico City daily Reforma reporting recently that 231 people were murdered across the country from Aug. 4 to Aug. 10, raising the death toll for the year to 6,309.
More than 50,000 people, according to official figures, have died in drug-related violence in Mexico since late 2006, when President Felipe Calderon took office and declared war on the country's powerful drug cartels.
Calderon has deployed tens of thousands of soldiers and Federal Police officers across the country to combat drug cartels and other criminal organizations.
The use of the armed forces to fight drug traffickers, however, has failed to stem the violence.
Mexico registered 27,199 murders in 2011, or 24 per 100,000 people, the highest number since Calderon took office, the National Institute of Statistics and Geography, or INEGI, said in a report released on Aug. 20.
The Movement for Peace with Justice and Dignity, which was founded by human rights activist and poet Javier Sicilia, puts the death toll from Mexico's drug war at 70,000. EFE