Police have cordoned off a wooded area in the Mearns village of St Cyrus following the discovery of a body.
The grim find was made on Saturday and although full details are yet to be released, the family of missing local 62-year-old Graeme Leslie has been informed.
A stretch of ground behind the public toilets in the village remains the scene of forensic activity following the discovery of human remains by police search personnel.
Mr Leslie has been the subject of a major missing persons inquiry for more than a week.
Worries for the welfare of the ex-serviceman arose after a last sighting of him at his Scotston Place home in the village on July 17.
He had spoken to his family in Dundee on July 14, but despite several subsequent reported sightings police had been unable to make contact with him.
The five foot tall, stocky man was also said by police to have been suffering from facial injuries sustained shortly before he was reported missing by his family.
This week police said that Mr Leslie’s bruised face might jog the memory of anyone who had seen him in the intervening period.
He and his wife, Margaret Ann, were infamously both arrested just hours after tying the knot in Montrose last September following an incident at an off-licence on the Angus town’s High Street.
Mr Leslie had been due to appear at Forfar sheriff court earlier this week for a deferred sentence on another matter.
A statement issued on Saturday afternoon said: “Police Scotland can confirm that a body has been found during the search for missing person Graeme Leslie.
“The discovery was made earlier today, Saturday July 22, by specialist officers during searches in the St Cyrus area.
Formal identification has yet to take place, however the 62-year-old’s next of kin have been informed of the development.”