The body of a man pulled from a Wellington bay has been confirmed as that of Joseph Nansen, a reported Nomads gang member.

Nansen's death remains unexplained and police are on the hunt for a dark or black backpack believed to have belonged to the 45-year-old.

His body was found in the water at Evans Bay on Tuesday.

"Police believe the last known sighting of Mr Nansen is the image of a man on a CCTV camera in the area of the Evans Bay yacht club around 11pm on Saturday, May 2," Detective Senior Sergeant Barry Bysouth said.


The man in the footage was close to where Nansen's body was located and was carrying a backpack that hasn't been found.

"Recovery of this backpack is significant to the investigation, and police would ask anyone who may have picked it up, or if anyone sees a dark backpack discarded in the area, to please contact police," Bysouth said.

"We are also looking for a number of items of clothing - a light-coloured hoodie, dark leather (or similar) jacket, dark trousers, and dark shoes with white or light-coloured soles.

"If you find any items of interest, please get in touch with police on 105."

Media outlet Stuff reported Nansen was a Nomads gang member and found in the water with only his underwear on - two factors that have raised red flags.

"The investigation into Mr Nansen's death continues, and remains unexplained at this time," Bysouth said.