Sixty officers from Mexico City's police force were suspended Tuesday after failing a drug test, the latest blow to an already dismal reputation for Mexico's capital police force.

The suspended officers included delegates to two of the city's biggest districts and two other high-ranking officials, the city's attorney general Samuel del Villar told a news conference.The scandal came days after 15 policemen were arrested in a brutal rape and kidnap of three teenage girls.

"They were suspended immediately," Del Villar said of the latest suspensions.

The news added to intense pressure on Mayor Cuauhtemoc Cardenas to clean up the city's notoriously dirty police and stop rampant crime.

Cardenas, of the leftist Party of the Democratic Revolution (PRD), won the first-ever modern vote for Mexico City mayor last year and is seen as a likely contender for the key 2000 presidential race.

Earlier this week, city residents reacted with disgust to news that 15 local policemen were arrested for the kidnapping and gang rape of three teenagers.

The girls, aged 13, 15 and 18, were kidnapped after asking police for directions and held for more than four days in horse stalls of the mounted police before managing to escape.

On Tuesday, the policemen's lawyer, Alejandro Guzman, said the three girls were prostitutes and had seduced the police.