A 28-year-old Levin man has appeared in Palmerston North Court charged with the murder of Palmiro MacDonald.
The man was remanded in custody without plea until April 5 and granted interim name suppression.
Mr MacDonald was the subject of a large, year-long investigation after he went missing on March 23 last year. His remains were later discovered in the Tararua Foothills on October 9.
"This is a significant moment in what has been an extensive and complex inquiry and we are glad to finally be able to hold somebody to account," said Detective Senior Sergeant Paul Baskett from Central District Police.
"We hope that this arrest will bring a sense of relief to Palmiro's whanau and friends."
Police want to hear from anyone with information. Call 0800 OP PALM (0800 677 256), Levin Station 06 366 0500, or CrimeStoppers on 0800 555 111.