Police searching Waitakere Ranges for Millane

British backpacker Grace Millane

For days, local police searched for her, but new evidence changed the course from a missing person investigation to a murder case.

Police said the body was in a forested area about 10 meters (33 feet) from the side of the road in the Waitakere Ranges near Auckland.

New Zealand police searching for missing British backpacker Grace Millane say they have found a body, state broadcaster Radio New Zealand reported Sunday. However, based on the evidence that we have gathered over the past few days, we expect that this is Grace.

He said he could not confirm whether Miss Millane's body was at the site.

She graduated from the University of Lincoln in England in September.

Police said they brought that man into the central Auckland police station on Saturday afternoon for questioning.

The man who has been charged with her murder will remain in police custody until Monday when he is due in court, police said.

Millane's father, millionaire English property developer David Millane, travelled from Britain to New Zealand earlier in the week.

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"The Millane family have requested privacy at this time and will not be making any further statements at this stage", the Auckland city police's statement said.

The man was with Ms Millane at several places, including Sky City, before going to CityLife Hotel with her.

'I want to reassure everyone, both here and overseas, that New Zealand Police are determined to do everything we can to find her'.

The graduate was last seen with a "male companion" at a hotel in Auckland at 9:41pm on Saturday 1 December.

Detective Beard said she met a man for a couple of hours on Saturday evening before surveillance cameras showed them entering the CityLife hotel at about 9.40pm.

Her family was surprised and anxious when she didn't contact them on her birthday or get in touch over on the days that followed.

"Grace is a lovely, outgoing, fun-loving, family-oriented daughter", he said, adding that she was usually in touch with her family every day.

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