Cervantes, WA: Charges following nude sea rescue

A man, who had to be rescued naked from the ocean north of Perth, had been charged by police as they investigate any potential links to a body found nearby in a burnt-out car.

The white Mitsubishi Pajero was found ablaze off Indian Ocean Dr between Cervantes and Jurien Bay, more than 200km north of Perth, in the early hours of Tuesday morning.

A body was found in the vehicle later on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, a man was seen acting erratically in a boat adrift in water off the Cervantes Jetty, near a small red car which was submerged.

He ended up in the water and had to be rescued by a fishing vessel, before he was taken into police custody and taken for medical treatment.

On Thursday, Benjamin Jack McLaughlin was charged with casting away ships, assault public officer, assault person assisting public officer, and obstructing public officers, appearing in Perth Magistrates Court that morning.

It was revealed in court the 20-year-old Hamilton Hill man was naked during the alleged incident on Tuesday morning.

He was granted bail ahead of his next court appearance on November 16. His bail conditions include not being allowed within 50km of Cervantes.

No charges have been laid over the discovery of the body in the burnt-out Pajero, with the remains yet to be identified.

WA Police Detective Senior Sergeant Greg McDonald on Wednesday said police are investigating if Mr McLaughlin’s incident and the Pajero are linked.

He revealed the Pajero had left the southern Perth suburb of Hamilton Hill about 9pm Monday, and must have been speeding to reach Cervantes by the time it was discovered on fire.

Police are still seeking dashcam footage from vehicles travelling in both directions along Indian Ocean Drive from 9pm on Monday to 12.30am on Tuesday or anyone who may have seen the Pajero speeding or driving erratically.

Anyone with information that may assist police is asked to call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or to make a report online.

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