HOMICIDE police investigating the suspicious disappearance of Deer Park man Ricky Lee Ganly have hauled his Magna sedan and a body from the bottom of a flooded Avoca mine.
Police divers made the grim discovery during a painstaking five-hour search of the site about a kilometre north west of Avoca yesterday.
Mr Ganly, 48, was last seen by his girlfriend at his Doherty Street home in Deer Park about 12pm on Sunday, April 28, last year.
Search and rescue divers, homicide detectives and police converged at the isolated, 20m deep mine, accessible from a dirt track off Homebush Road, after new information provided a break in the 10-month old case.
Homicide investigator Ron Iddles said he believed there were people in the Avoca-Maryborough area who knew exactly what happened to Mr Ganly and urged them to come forward.
He said phone records showed Mr Ganly was close to the old mine site about 1.30pm on April 29.
“We’ve been able to establish over the last nine or 10 months that his last movements were here in Avoca on the 28th and 29th of April last year,” Senior Sergeant Iddles said. “As a result of federal information we received last week, we came here [Sunday] believing we could find Ricky’s Magna. We’ve now just located his Magna and sadly what appears to be human remains in the vehicle.”
Police divers spent the morning searching the murky waters before discovering the car about 15 metres from the bank at 2.30pm.
It was hauled from the mine with chains and a truck.
Earlier, police also retrieved a weapon from the water but Senior Sergeant Iddles said it was a World War II era rifle and not believed to be connected to the case.
“This is, I guess, an area where people discard things,” he said.
The body is yet to be formally identified. Police are urging anyone who saw Mr Ganly or his 1996 Magna sedan around the time of his disappearance to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or www.crimestoppers.com.au