A MAN whose headless body was found on fire was blasted with a shotgun before being decapitated, police said today.
The body of John Grainger, 32, was discovered by firefighters in Greater Manchester, at 5.10am yesterday when they extinguished a blaze.
Police were called and Mr Grainger's head was discovered nearby.
A post mortem examination has now concluded that Mr Grainger died from a blunt force head injury and a "shotgun wound to the head".
A police spokesman said it is believed he was decapitated after being shot.
Two men, aged 29 and 31, who had been arrested on suspicion of possessing shotgun cartridges prior to the discovery of the body were later arrested on suspicion of murder. They remain in police custody for questioning.
Superintendent Pete Matthews from Greater Manchester Police said: "Our thoughts are with John's family at this tragic time, as they try to come to terms with the loss of their loved one.
"We have a team of dedicated detectives who are working hard to establish the exact circumstances surrounding John's death, so we can provide his family with some much-needed answers.
"We will be continuing with our inquiries and speaking to local residents.
"We also have extra officers in the area to offer reassurance and assist with the investigation.
"People in the community are in shock at what has happened and I would encourage anyone with any information to contact the police."
The crime scene in the town centre was cordoned off as forensics officers scoured the area.
Police said they understood a lot of rumours were circulating but said it would be wrong to speculate and insisted they were keeping an open mind.