Statement to be attributed to Detective Senior Sergeant Stuart Harvey:
Police have now launched a homicide enquiry following the discovery of a body in the Longwood Forestry block.
We can now confirm the body has been identified as Dale Tama Watene, 40, of Otautau.
A post mortem was carried out today.
The investigation team has conducted extensive enquiries over the past few weeks in the search for Mr Watene.
Police continue to support Mr Watene's family.
On behalf of his family, we would also request they be given privacy at this time.
Anyone with information in relation to this case is asked to please contact Detective Sergeant Chris Lucy on 03 211 0400.
Alternatively, information can be passed anonymously to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.
Issued by the Police Media Centre