NAGS HEAD, N.C. — A medical examiner says the body of a neatly dressed man that washed ashore on the Outer Banks this week was likely buried at sea up to a year ago.

The body was discovered Tuesday by a Nags Head man who was watching the waves generated by Hurricane Maria.

Police Chief Kevin Brinkley told The Virginian-Pilot newspaper that the man’s body was in a black bag made out of what looked like a synthetic material, and its bottom was ripped out.

A spokeswoman said the Environmental Protection Agency is working with the medical examiner in Greenville to share information about reported sea burials in hopes of identifying the body.

Sea burials are allowed under the Marine Protection, Research and Sanctuaries Act.

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