BEIJING—A court in eastern China said Saturday that it has convicted 11 men of intentional homicide for the killings of 16 fellow crew members on an oceangoing fishing boat, the official Xinhua News Agency reported.

The Intermediate People's Court in the eastern city of Weihai said it sentenced five of the 11 men to death in the bloody incident, which left six others unaccounted for, Xinhua reported. The court sentenced another man to death with reprieve, which can be commuted to life imprisonment, and jailed the remaining five who were convicted.

The men onboard the fishing boat were unhappy with their salaries and plotted to hijack the vessel when it was sailing near Chile in 2011, Xinhua said.

According to a more detailed account by the state-run Beijing News, the men killed their victims or forced them to jump into the ocean as they tried to get rid of those who might foil their hijacking plan.

Citing court documents, Beijing News said the men were contracted to be paid 45,000 yuan ($7,200) a year plus commission for their services and that they had planned to bargain with management by hijacking the vessel.