World Bulletin/News Desk
Tropical Storm Helene made landfall off the Gulf of Mexico on Saturday and weakened into a tropical depression as it plowed up Mexico's east coast, the U.S. National Hurricane Center said.
The depression was about 15 miles (24 km) south-southwest of Tampico and had maximum sustained winds of 35 miles per hour (56 kph), the NHC said in its 10 a.m. CDT (1500 GMT) bulletin.
As Helene weakened, tropical storm warnings were discontinued on the Mexican coast, although it was expected to produce three to six inches (7.6 to 15.2 cm) of rain in the states of Veracruz and Tamaulipas.
Helene was predicted to continue weakening and dissipate within 48 hours, the NHC said.
There were no reports that Helene had affected the Gulf of Mexico's oil installations, which are built to resist much more powerful hurricanes.
Last week, Hurricane Ernesto hit Mexico, unleashing rains and winds that caused six deaths.
It did not identify the target of the civil action, which coincides with criminal inquiries into suspected fraud underway in Belgium and the Netherlands.
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