Detectives investigating the suspicious death of a man buried in a shallow grave near Tongariro have searched through a second Auckland address over the past fortnight.
A tip off led police to discover human remains, believed to belong to a Chinese man missing since 2017, buried on the side of Rangipo Intake Rd which comes off the Desert Rd in the central North Island.
Following a post-mortem examination, police confirmed the case was officially a homicide inquiry.
The remains, which police say "had been in place for a period of time", were discovered in March but still have not been formally identified yet.
The process is expected to "take some time due to the level of forensic analysis required", according to Detective Inspector John Sutton.
However, the police are seeking any information about Bao Chang Wang, known as Ricky, and today released a photograph of the missing man.
"Mr Wang is a Chinese National and New Zealand permanent resident. His family
believed he had travelled overseas in 2017 and he was not reported as missing
in New Zealand," Sutton had earlier said.
He said police have been in contact with his family in New Zealand and in China to make sure he did not leave the country under a different identity.
Updates on the progress of the homicide inquiry have been infrequent although in a new development, Sutton said police have conducted a "scene examination" of an Auckland apartment over the past fortnight.
"Police are following a number of leads as a result of information provided by the public," said Sutton.
The apartment is the second Auckland property to be searched as part of the investigation.
Earlier this month, the Herald revealed police and ESR scientists were combing a property in Massey, West Auckland, looking for evidence about the death.
"The address that is the subject of the scene examination was recently sold to a family [who] are not in any way connected to this investigation," said Sutton.
"They have been relocated by police for the duration of the scene examination and are being provided with the appropriate support and assistance."
Property advertisements show the 4-bedroom house was sold in October last year.
• Anyone with information is asked to call 0508 RANGIPO (0508 726 447) or anonymously phone Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 – reference "Ricky Wang". Mandarin-speaking Police officers are available.
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