Residents lynched a suspected thief in Plaza Yochib, a Tzeltal Indian community in the southeastern Mexican state of Chiapas, officials said.

The incident occurred on Sunday, when residents from several communities chased and detained Benito Gomez Lopez and Jose Alfredo Guzman Luna for allegedly robbing two area merchants, the Chiapas Attorney General's Office said.

Gomez Lopez was killed and Guzman Luna was turned over to authorities by villagers.

Gomez Lopez's body "had various burns and an entry wound presumably caused by a gunshot" fired on the sports field of the Emiliano Zapata elementary school in Plaza Yochib, the AG's office said.

Residents identified Gomez Lopez as one of those responsible for robbing the merchants.

The two robbery victims, identified as Pedro Gomez Mendez, 35, and Alfredo Rodriguez Velazco, 21, were taken to a hospital in the city of San Cristobal de Las Casas.

Gomez Mendez was shot in the abdomen and Rodriguez was hospitalized for treatment of back and arm injuries, the AG's office said.

The special prosecutor's office for Indian affairs is investigating the case. EFE