Snorkeller who drowned near Kaikoura named as Qinglin Hu

Qinglin Hu failed to return from a snorkelling trip in Kaikoura on March 19.

Qinglin Hu failed to return from a snorkelling trip in Kaikoura on March 19.

The man who drowned while snorkelling near the Kaikoura Peninsula has been named.

Qinglin Hu, known as Charles, was first reported missing after he failed to return home from a snorkelling trip on March 19.

Police divers found the 55-year-old Christchurch resident's body in shallow water after an "extensive search", Sergeant Jason Munro said at the time.

Police initially refused to release Hu's name after the Coroner made an order prohibiting his wife's name being published, or "any name or particulars likely to lead to her identification".

Body found during search for missing snorkeller near Kaikoura
Snorkeller missing near Kaikoura

Munro previously said the discovery was made in shallow water during low tide at East Head about 6pm on March 20.

Hu was snorkelling near an area known as Shark Tooth Point, near South Bay, about 3pm on March 19 and was due out of the water about 5pm. His wife raised the alarm about 7.30pm.

The pair had travelled to Kaikoura for the day.

The search for the man was suspended that evening due to poor light, but resumed on March 20 morning with a helicopter and Land Search and Rescue. The Police National Dive Squad joined the search in the afternoon.

A diver's catch-bag, spear gun, float and hand net were located on the morning of March 20.

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