The mother of missing gang member Kimble Moore knows her son is dead but wants his body returned so the whanau can have closure.
The family are desperate for answers and the wish to have his body returned even outweighs the desire to have someone held accountable for his disappearance.
Kimble Moore, 48, a Tribesman from Waipapakauri, was reported missing by his partner after she last saw him at a Taipa property in the early hours of Friday, March 18.
Erana Moore, of Ngati Kahu descent, said after nearly four months of searching for her son across Northland the pain had not eased.
Mr Moore was the second eldest of seven siblings. He grew up in Mangere and was a butcher by trade, but at the age of 18 he became involved in the gangs.
"To me that was his choice. I can't control him, he had his walk to walk and I had other kids to look after," she said.
Kimble has done prison time for serious drug offending. He moved to Kaitaia about three years ago, was engaged and hoped to open a butchery in the Far North.
"I know he's gone and I'd be stupid not to accept it. For me it's getting worse. It makes me feel shattered but I'm his Mum and I'm not giving up," Mrs Moore said from Hamilton yesterday.
"Someone knows what's happened and they need to give the family that bit of respect so we can have that closure for Kimble. I know he was no angel but he's still human."
She said the family had heard many stories about what had happened to her son, including he had been "cut up and put here and there" but there was no evidence that could prove where he was or who might be responsible.
While Mr Moore was involved in the criminal world, Mrs Moore did not know what was behind the sudden disappearance.
She also acknowledged people may be afraid to speak out because of the gang links.
The Moore family had based themselves in Kaitaia during their search, but this week returned to their Hamilton home for a family gathering. Since he was reported missing the family, who have stayed in a house in Kaitaia, has searched along Ninety Mile Beach, through forestry and even gone to Kawakawa after people had door knocked them with information.
"It's the worst thing a mother can experience. I can accept illness or an accident but not this," Mrs Moore said.
Her appeal to the community was: "A least have the heart to come forward. If you have information go to the police, don't keep knocking on our door and telling us stories."
In a written response, all Northland police would say about the case was: "The investigation is on-going and police are in regular communication with Mr Moore's family."
Mrs Moore agreed it was not an easy case for police who were looking for a body which could be in "a million and one places".
In early April more than 20 police and volunteers spent a full day searching an isolated area of bush in the Duncan Rd area, south-east of Kaitaia, for the body of Mr Moore.
- If you have any information contact Kaitaia police on 09 4086500 or freephone Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.
The last person Kimble was seen with in Taipa was arrested in April after a three week man-hunt. However, the charges do not relate to the disappearance of Kimble.
Kaitaia man Rawden James Yates, 35, was charged with attempted murder in Kaitaia on February 12, arising from the shooting of a man in Archibald St, aggravated robbery and kidnapping at Doubtless Bay, December 14 , unlawful possession of a firearm, February 18, threatening to kill and assault with a firearm, and unlawful possession of a firearm.
Marama Pickering, 24, of Kaitaia, is facing three charges of aiding and abetting Yates.