Skeletal remains found dumped in bush in the foothills of the Tararua Ranges are suspected to be missing Levin man Palmiro Macdonald.

Police have revealed bones were found during a search of the Mangahao Dam area, near Shannon, Manawatu, yesterday, following information from a member of the public.

Today a police source said there was a "good chance" it could be missing gang associate who was last seen in March.

However, this was not confirmed with extensive scientific testing needed to determine the mystery person's identity.


Specialist search groups are at the scene today with the area cordoned off.

Forensic and post-mortem testing is under way to identify the remains.

Macdonald, also known as "Powser", was picked up from his home in Levin on March 23 by an associate driving a 1994 Mercedes Benz. He has not been seen since.

On the day police officially announced an investigation into his disappearance, a Hokio Beach house that he regularly visited was torched.

Police made a fresh appeal last month on its programme Police Ten 7 for information to help solve what happened to Palmiro to provide answers for his family.

More to come.