Camping gear may identify body

POLICE say they are closer to identifying the man whose remains were found at Dairyville on Sunday.

Coffs/Clarence crime manager, Detective Inspector Cameron Lindsay, said investigators were working on strong leads and were relying on scientific and forensic examinations.

Mr Lindsay revealed the man may have been camping in the area and police had found camping gear and other personal items which were being tested.

“The body may have come from higher up around that creek area,” Mr Lindsay said.

He would not release details of the autopsy preliminary report but said it was now believed the body ‘came apart through natural causes’ and there could be ‘a myriad’ of ways this had happened.

Body tissue found at the scene on Tuesday was forensically examined yesterday and was found to be non-human, along with other material which had been found, Mr Lindsay said.

Police specialists including divers, the Operational Support Group, police cadaver dogs and SES crews have been searching Wayper Creek since the gruesome discovery of the lower half of a man’s body tangled in flood debris. The remaining body parts are yet to be found and searchers yesterday changed strategy by using four-wheel-drives to focus on scrub near the water course.

“I wouldn’t go into who we are looking at. Obviously we would want to speak to friends and relatives of missing persons,” Mr Lindsay said.

He revealed some members of the public had contacted police during the extensive media coverage and he has encouraged anyone with information to contact Coffs Harbour Police Station on 6652 0299 or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000. Police continue to treat the death as suspicious and are preparing a report for the coroner.

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