Rescue teams were looking Saturday for some 40 people who have been missing since their boat sank off Malaysia in rough seas, local media reported.

The vessel carrying 44 Indonesians who were returning to their country to celebrate the end of Ramadan sank Thursday night while en route to the Indonesian city of Batam, the Malaysian newspaper The Star reported.

Fishermen and rescue teams plucked four people aged 26-32 out of the water on Friday after the boat sank off the coast of the southern Malaysian state of Johor.

Malaysia's maritime agency said the search was resumed Saturday morning after being called off Friday night due to bad weather.

Authorities said they believed the Indonesians were working illegally in Malaysia and chose to return home in a precarious vessel to avoid customs controls. EFE