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NZ Police Open Fire As Great White Shark Mauls Man to Death in Front of Hundreds of Beach Tourists

Update Date: Feb 27, 2013 02:01 PM EST

A 46-year-old father-of-one was mauled to death by a Great White shark off the coast of New Zealand in the second deadly attack in the country in four years.

Adam Strange, an award-winning filmmaker, was attacked and pulled under water 200 metres from Auckland's popular Muriwai Beach at around 1.30pm in front of hundreds of tourists lounging on the beach, New Zealand police said in a statement.

Apparently, up to three more sharks were said to have been drawn to the bloody attack.  Police had fired at least 20 shots from a lifeboat and helicopter in a desperate attempt to rescue Strange.

"Police and surf life savers went out in two inflatable rubber dinghies and fired on the shark," Inspector Shawn Rutene said, according to Bloomberg News. "It rolled over and disappeared."

Police said that the Great White shark eventually let go and swam away from Strange, and it took rescuers 30 minutes to retrieve Strange's body, according to the Daily Mail

The remains of the killer shark were later dragged up on the beach.

Pio Mose, who had been fishing off rocks beside the beach described the deadly attack.  He told that he saw a "huge" shark attack the lone swimmer 50 yards from where he was standing.

"All of a sudden we saw the shark fin and next minute, boom, attack him and then blood everywhere on the water," Mose told

Mose said that Strange appeared to struggle with the shark before it swam away. However, moments later the shark came back with others.

Mose said he immediately called the police on his cell phone while his friend ran to get help.

"He was still alive. He put his head up. We called him to swim over the rock to where we were," Mose said. "He raised his hand up and then while he was rising his hand up we saw another attack and pull him in the water."

"He came back up. His head was on the water...then we notice he was already dead," he said, adding that as blood spilled into the water, more sharks appeared and started swimming around the area.  Mose said that he and other anglers watched in terror as the shark carried Strange's body out to sea.

"It's awful - it's scary, like a nightmare to me. I was shaking, scared, panicked," he said.

According to Te Ara: the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, there have been 44 recorded unprovoked shark attacks in New Zealand since 1852, and Great White Sharks have been responsible for most of the 11 fatal attacks where the shark has been identified.

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