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Vic accused in hospital as remains found

AAP logoAAP 11/12/2016 Julian Drape

A man charged with murdering Melbourne mother Karen Rae may have suffered a heart attack in recent days as authorities searched for her remains.

Tony John Smith, 49 , appeared briefly in the Melbourne Magistrates' Court on Sunday charged with murdering Ms Rae on April 15 last year.

The mother disappeared from her Frankston North home on that day and hasn't been seen since.

Human remains found in bushland next to the Frankston Freeway on Saturday are yet to be identified.

But it's believed they belong to the mother who was 48 when she vanished.

Crews searched the bushland area on Friday and returned on Saturday.

A lawyer acting for Smith on Sunday told the magistrates court the Langwarrin man had spent the past two nights in the Royal Melbourne Hospital being treated for a heart condition.

If Smith hadn't actually had a heart attack he'd suffered "something similar", the lawyer told Magistrate Bob Kumar.

The court heard Smith was on a host of medications for his condition.

There was no application for bail and the magistrate told the accused man he'd be seen by the custody nurse.

Asked if he understood, Smith replied: "Thank you."

The 49-year-old was dressed in a light blue checked shirt and dark blue jeans.

He was remanded to reappear in court on Friday.

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