A female body found early in waters near the Mengalum island is transported to a jetty for further identification in Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia, Feb. 4, 2017. (Xinhua/Xue Fei)
KOTA KINABALU, Malaysia, Feb. 4 (Xinhua) -- A postmortem will be carried out to determine the identity of a female body, which was found on Saturday morning in waters near the Mengalum island, as the search for the missing from the Sabah sunken boat have been refocused on the area where the body was found.
The result of the postmortem is expected to come out on Sunday as the body was already in decomposed state, said Adam Aziz, Kota Kinabalu Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) director at a daily briefing on Saturday.
"We are not denying possibility of the body being one of the missing .. The identity can be ascertained through family members or DNA results," he said.
The ill-fated boat, carrying 28 tourists from China, capsized en route from Kota Kinabalu to Mengalum island, which is about 50 kilometers west of Kota Kinablau. Three of the tourists have been confirmed dead while another five and a crewmember are still missing.
Aziz said they have deployed assets to focus on the area where the body was found, about 200 square nautical miles, bringing the total search area on Saturday to 2,100 square nautical miles, covering waters off Sabah, Sarawak and Brunei.
The skipper of the boat was sentenced to six months in jail on Saturday for steering an overloaded and unsafe vessel, for the first time shedding light on what caused the tragedy. A preliminary investigation is expected to be released next week.