updated 12/23/2007 12:01:13 AM ET 2007-12-23T05:01:13

Thai marine police have retrieved the bodies of 22 Myanmar migrant workers in the Andaman Sea, police said Sunday.

Acting on information from fishermen, the search party found the corpses floating in the sea off Thailand's Ranong province Saturday.

"We do not know why or when the boat or boats sank but we believe that they must have been overloaded and sank in that area about two days ago," said police Lt. Col. Yongyuth Preechachart of the Ranong police station.

The 22 bodies, including those of eight women, 10 men and four children were being kept at a Buddhist temple in Ranong for autopsies, he said.

Many from impoverished Myanmar cross the border illegally to seek work in Thailand.

Ranong, 290 miles south of Bangkok, is one of the major trading and commuting points between Myanmar's Victoria Point and Thailand.

Copyright 2007 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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