Body found off coast to be identified

Police are speaking with next of kin before they will release the identity of a body found off coast of Tauranga on Sunday.

Police are yet to release the identity of a body that was found of the Tauranga Coast in the weekend.

Fishermen made the grim discovery near Pudney Rocks, a reef to the North East of Tauranga, between Mayor Island and Motiti Island, around midday yesterday.

They recovered the human remains and returned to Tauranga.

Despite some social media commentary, experienced boaties in the area say it is unlikely to be Karl Earwaker, whose boat was found upturned near Mayor Island three weeks ago, due to the currents in the Bay which generally tend to sweep northwards.

A police spokesperson says inquiries are continuing into how the body came to be in the water.

“Police are still in the process of formal identification and speaking to next of kin, so until those formal processes are completed, we don't have any more information to share.”

Meanwhile, police are continuing to investigate the disappearance of a man whose car was found in the Kaituna River on March 31.

Police responded to reports of a crash on Ford Road at about 11pm.

A vehicle was found submerged in the river.

Police believe 53-year-old Maketu man Simon Oliver may have been in the vehicle at the time of the crash.

The police national dive squad was called in the following day, but was unable to locate Mr Oliver.

At the time of the search, Senior Sergeant Glenn Saunders said police believed Mr Oliver was the only occupant in the car.



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A great ’reflection’ of the wet day at Harbourside finals on Saturday. Photo: Tierre Thompson.

Send us your photos from around the Bay of Plenty. kendra@thesun.co.nz