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New Zealand Police still searching for gun in shooting death of Canadian woman’s fiancé

Click to play video 'New Zealand police charge 23-year-old man with murder of Australian tourist' New Zealand police charge 23-year-old man with murder of Australian tourist
WATCH ABOVE: New Zealand police charge 23-year-old man with murder of Australian tourist – Aug 18, 2019

Police in New Zealand have made an arrest but are still looking to locate the weapon allegedly used in the shooting death of a Canadian woman’s fiancé.

“The firearm used in the shooting has not yet been recovered, and locating it remains a priority for police,” New Zealand Police Det. Insp. Graham Pitkethley said.

READ MORE: Man charged with murder in death of Canadian’s fiance in New Zealand

In a statement Sunday morning, the police force said officers are searching for forensic evidence in Waikato, about 170 kilometres south of Auckland, on the country’s North Island.

Sean McKinnon was found dead in his van near the village of Gordonton on Friday morning.

WATCH: Canadian woman escapes attack in New Zealand; fiancé murdered

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Canadian woman escapes attack in New Zealand; fiancé murdered – Aug 16, 2019

McKinnon, a 33-year-old Australian, was vacationing with his partner, Bianca Buckley, who is from Halifax.

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Police said the couple had been sleeping inside the van at a scenic spot near the coastal town of Raglan when a suspect approached the vehicle just after 3 a.m. Friday.

READ MORE: New Zealanders turn in thousands of guns as buyback begins

Pitkethley said the suspect fired several shots into the van. Buckley managed to escape and called police.

A 23-year-old man has been charged with murder after a search warrant was carried out in Waikato.

Police have yet to identified the accused, who was also charged with aggravated robbery and making death threats.

WATCH: N.S. woman’s fiancé murdered in New Zealand

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N.S. woman’s fiancé murdered in New Zealand – Aug 16, 2019

As part of the investigation, officers are looking to speak with anyone who saw hitchhikers in Gordonton–Whitikahu.

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“Particularly, if any motorists that travelled this route on Friday have dashcam footage, police would like to hear from you,” Pitkethley said.

New Zealand Police say they are providing support to the victim’s loved ones and are working to return his body to his family.

With files from Maham Abedi and Sarah Ritchie, Global News, the Canadian Press and Reuters