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Burnt-out car death not suspicious

16:40 Thu Dec 6 2012
AAP

Police say there was no foul play involved in the death of a salesman whose body was found in a burnt-out car in North Canterbury.

Shane Malcolm Bell's body was found in the burnt-out silver 1989 Subaru station wagon on Sunday by a group of four-wheel drive enthusiasts near Loburn in North Canterbury on Sunday.

Police officers initially treated the 28-year-old's death as suspicious, but Detective Senior Sergeant Brian Archer says they no longer regard it as such.

"As a result of inquiries undertaken to date, police are satisfied that there is no evidence of foul play in Mr Bell's death," he said.

"It will now be for the coroner to make a determination as to the cause of death."

Mr Bell was last seen at his Christchurch home last Thursday morning. The burnt-out car was later seen at the Loburn site some time late that afternoon.

Bullet-holes were found in the car but police said they were fired by a group of recreational shooters who came across it on Friday evening when it was already burnt out.