Remains of a human body found in the Tararua Foothills last week have been confirmed as missing Levin man Palmiro MacDonald.

Police today confirmed the identity of the remains as MacDonald, who was last seen in Levin on March 23.

A forensic examination is continuing and a police investigation into the circumstances surrounding MacDonald's death is ongoing, Detective Senior Sergeant Paul Baskett said.

"I hope that the discovery of Mr Palmiro's body will give his family and friends some closure," he said.

"This is a significant event for the investigation as we continue to progress, however it's most significant for Mr MacDonald's whanau.

"They ask for the space to work through this difficult time."


MacDonald, 36, was reported to have gang links and was rumoured to have been killed at the time of a house fire at a Hokio Beach near Levin in a confrontation with the Head Hunters gang over methamphetamine.

Police said he was last seen in Levin on March 23 travelling as a passenger in a Silver 1994 Mercedes Benz 320 Saloon.

A large-scale investigation into his disappearance was launched, including search warrants executed in the Horowhenua area and examination of some items of interest which were located.

Baskett said last month MacDonald's disappearance was out of character.