POLICE searching for the torso of murdered ex-convict Michael Doherty

yesterday admitted they were ''baffled''.

However, they vowed to keep digging until the dead man's remains were


''We're still searching bogland area,'' Detective Chief Inspector John

Sherry said. ''But at the moment we don't really have a clue to the

body's whereabouts, or to the clothes Mr Doherty was wearing.

''Investigations are going reasonably well but we still feel people

are too scared to come forward with information.''

A murder investigation was launched last week after human remains were

unearthed in a woodland bog close to the A761 Port Glasgow to Kilmacolm


Mr Doherty's head, legs, and arm were retrieved from the bog which was

half a mile from the victim's home in Port Glasgow.

Detectives yesterday described the case as being the most brutal

murder they had investigated.

New evidence suggests the 36-year-old was shot in the head at close

range before his body was dismembered and dumped in the muddy pit.

Detectives suspect drug barons were behind the killing, possibly

because Mr Doherty crossed them on a deal.

It is believed at least three men were involved.

Mr Doherty's body was dismembered and the parts buried in a bid to

destroy evidence, detectives said.

DNA testing and dental records revealed the identity of the victim. Mr

Doherty's family had reported he had been missing since June 9.

The search began after a person walking a dog found a human hand in

Craigmalloch Woods.

Mr Doherty had served three years in an English prison for armed