KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysian police said today they had recovered five more bodies from the waters off the southern state of Johor, a day after a boat carrying illegal migrants capsized in big waves.
Authorities launched a search on Tuesday after 13 bodies were spotted in the sea near the coastal town of Bandar Penawar.
District police chief Rahmat Othman said the boat had been travelling from Indonesia’s Batam island and was believed to have been carrying up to 40 people.
“Some of the passengers managed to swim to safety, though it is unclear how many survived,” he said in a text message.
The bodies of nine men and nine women had been taken to a hospital for a post-mortem. More bodies were expected to be found, Rahmat said.
Indonesians travel to Malaysia to work in plantations and as domestic helpers.