VANCOUVER ó A B.C. expatriate reported missing in Mexico was found dead Tuesday, his neck secured to a tree with a belt near his home on the country's southwestern coast, a friend said.
Ron Lloyd MacKintosh, a 64-year-old retiree from Nanaimo, B.C., was reported missing Oct. 22. Detectives found his body in a wooded area about three kilometres outside his home in Barra de Navidad, according to police and friends there.
Police have three or four suspects in custody who are believed to have robbed him, Dave Norris, the victim's neighbour told QMI Agency in a statement Wednesday.
"(Tourist police) believe this group is responsible," Norris, who identified the body, wrote.
He said police arrived at his door in Barra de Navidad Tuesday morning and took him to the crime scene behind a barb wired fence on a rural road.
MacKintosh's hands were bound with tape and there was a belt securing his neck to a tree, he wrote. The body was covered with a blanket.
"I identified it to be that of Ron because of the blue clogs he always wore, the shorts I had seen him wearing many times, and the Hawaiian-style white shirt with green Mary Jane leaves on it," Norris wrote.
"Ron is a missed friend, my next door neighbor whom I always enjoyed sharing a couple beers and always a shot of tequila with. Nice gentle guy just wanting to enjoy his golden years."
Another friend, Ron Burns, called MacKintosh a "wonderful man" with numerous friends in the village of about 4,000 people that's a popular destination for Canadian snowbirds. He said MacKintosh has lived there for almost three years with his common-law wife.
"He was a good friend of mine. I'm one of the last people that saw him. We had a couple of beers, he dropped me off and then he disappeared," Burns said.
"You've got to remember, this is a village ... most of us know each other. It hit the community pretty bad."
MacKintosh was a retired senior field inspector with Vancouver Island engineering firm Koers and Associates and had been with the company since it was established in 1987.
Company director Tony Koers said he had known MacKintosh since the '70s.
"We're still trying to come to terms with that news. It's terribly sad," he said.
"He was exactly where he wanted to be. He loved the beach, and that was one the main attractions."
The Canadian ex-pat was said to have had his dog with him when he drove off in his black 2008 Jeep Patriot, which has a B.C. licence plate. He was reported missing the next day.
Neither his dog nor his SUV have been located, according to the Guadalajara Reporter.
Canada's foreign affairs department said local police are investigating and Canadian consular officials are in contact with the man's family and providing assistance.