Dec. 9 (UPI) -- Police in New Zealand discovered a body Sunday in the search for missing British backpacker Grace Millane.
Auckland Detective Inspector Scott Beard said the body, believed to be the 22-year-old Millane, was found in a bush area on Scenic Drive, in Waitakere after it was identified as an area of interest.
"The formal identification process will now take place. However, based on the evidence that we have gathered over the past few days, we expect that this is Grace," said Beard. "Obviously, this brings the search for Grace to an end. It is an unbearable time for the Millane family and our hearts go out to them."
He added the investigation would continue, as police called for sightings of a Toyota Corolla hatchback that was rented from a central Auckland rental last week.
A 26-year-old man was charged with murder in the case and was being interrogated by police in Auckland in relation to Millane's disappearance.
Millane was last seen at the Citylife Hotel in the Auckland city center on Dec. 1, with a "male companion."
"We know that he was with her on the Saturday evening and went to a number of places before going to the Citylife Hotel," Beard said.
Police hadn't immediately uncovered any evidence that the two had met before that night.
Millane had traveled to New Zealand from Peru on Nov. 20 as part of a year-long worldwide trip after her college graduation.
She had been in contact with her parents almost daily leading up to her disappearance.
Millane's father was informed of the discovery of the body and was "devastated" by the news of the murder charges.
"Any father, any parent in this situation will struggle. I feel for him, I have a daughter in her twenties. So we are putting a lot of support around him. It's difficult because he's here with a brother from England, and the rest of the family are back home. So our hearts go out to them," Beard said.