Australian tourist shot dead in New Zealand carjacking

A manhunt is underway in the New Zealand town of Raglan after an Australian man’s body was found inside a campervan.

Waikato Police said the vehicle, a white 2017 Toyota Hiace ZL, was stolen prior to the discovery, with the campervan and body dumped 80km away in Gordontown.

It’s understood the 33-year-old victim was travelling with a 32-year-old Canadian woman when they were confronted by the armed man during the early hours of this morning.

The gunman reportedly demanded the keys to the campervan before shooting the Australian man “more than once”.

Detective Inspector Graham Pitkethley said the woman managed to escape the ordeal before running several kilometres to safety.

“We are supporting the female victim who is understandably very shocked and distressed, providing her with the support and welfare that she needs,” he said.

Authorities believe the incident was not pre-meditated and are urging anyone with information to come forward.

“This is a random attack by, at this stage, what we can attribute to a sole offender but due to the circumstances of the attack, it is likely that he has confided in members of his community,” Inspector Pitkethley said.

Police want to hear from any witnesses who saw the campervan after the shooting and Inspector Pitkethley said police are working on the assumption the gunman is still armed.

Forensic officers are examining the campervan for evidence. 

A spokesperson for the Department of Foreign Affairs has confirmed it is assisting in the case.

“The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade is providing consular assistance, in accordance with the Consular Services Charter, to the family of an Australian man who died in New Zealand,” they said.

More to come

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