Investigators in El Salvador on Friday unearthed the bodies of several victims from the home of a former police officer and suspected murderer.
Authorities confirmed at least eight bodies have been removed so far from the home of Hugo Ernesto Osorio, some 48 miles northwest of the capital San Salvador.
Osorio is a convicted rapist who was charged with the murder of four people earlier this month, and is suspected of killing dozens more -- many of them believed to be women.
According to prosecutor Max Munoz, sexual violence is the leading theory for the killings.
Munoz added that some victims had been reported missing for years.
Neither Osorio nor his lawyer could immediately be reached for comment.
Authorities also point to the possibility of a wider conspiracy.
10 others have been charged with murdering nine women in presumably related homicides, along with four other victims whose bodies turned up on Osorio's property.
The house was ringed by heavily-armed soldiers and police on Friday, as dozens of relatives of missing people gathered nearby, many wondering if they might be able to identify the victims.
Meanwhile, Osorio is being held in maximum security prison where he is also considered a witness who can shed light on other crimes.
The head of El Salvador's national police said Osorio was removed from the force 15 years ago after he was found guilty of raping a woman as well as unlawful sex with a minor, crimes for which he was ultimately sentenced to five years behind bars.
Officials have also said they are analyzing evidence that may point to other crimes possibly committed by Osorio, including robbery.