London detectives confirmed late last night that a body pulled from
the River Thames was that of missing New Zealander Johnny Sleigh.

The 36-year-old engineering draughtsman from Waimate in South Canterbury had lived in London for about six years.

He was reported missing by friends on May 10 after he failed to show up for work.

Friends last saw him leaving a bar in central London in the early hours
of Saturday, May 8.

London Metropolitan police said a post-mortem examination had established that he drowned.

His death was not being treated as suspicious.

Detective Inspector Tim Dobson of the homicide and serious crime command said police had CCTV footage of Mr Sleigh on Hungerford Bridge.

Officers wanted to talk to anyone who might have seen him.

"We know from CCTV that there were several people using the bridge
and any of them may be able assist us in establishing how Johnny
came to be in the water.

"We also know from CCTV that he did not reach the other side of the
bridge."

Mr Dobson also said detectives still wanted to speak to anyone who
might have met Mr Sleigh in the Guanabara Bar earlier on the night he
disappeared.

Late last night, a statement from Mr Sleigh's parents Peter and
Caroline on behalf of their family, including brother David and sisters Catherine Booth, Meg Sleigh and Susie Chambers, said: "We are very sad that our precious son is no longer with us.

"The days since Johnny went missing have been some of the most difficult in our lives as we waited for news from the other side of the
world.

"We very much wanted Johnny to be found alive, but to our great sadness this has not turned out to be the case.

"It is a parent's hope their child will return safely from travels abroad and a parent's nightmare that something happens while they are away.

"We are thankful to the police and his friends that in the end Johnny
has been found and that we can now focus on bringing him back home.

"We still have many questions about how and why Johnny ended up
being in the water and expect an inquest will help to answer some of
these in the weeks and months to come.

"A marathon runner and cyclist, Johnny was a strong, loyal and caring
person, with so much to live for. We loved it when Johnny would come back to the family farm in Waimate, New Zealand, to take a break from busy London.

"The amazing outpouring of care and support from around the
globe during the last 10 days shows just how special and loved our
Johnny was."

- Vaimoana Tapaleao, NZPA