Nigella Lawson Invited To Apply For US Visa
Nigella Lawson has been invited to apply for a visa to travel to America just days after she was stopped from flying to Los Angeles.
The television cook was due to take a flight from Heathrow at the weekend but was turned away, apparently following her court confession that she has taken cocaine.
Lawson had earlier tweeted about going on holiday and posted a photo of a sunhat and some mustard.
"Packing for my holiday! #essentials," she wrote.
But the US embassy in London said she had now been invited to apply for a visa and promised the matter could be "handled routinely and expeditiously".
During the December fraud trial of the 54-year-old and her ex-husband Charles Saatchi's personal assistants, she admitted to taking the class A drug.
The court heard that she took it with her late husband John Diamond when he was terminally ill with cancer and in 2010 when she claimed she was being "subjected to intimate terrorism" by Mr Saatchi.
Police reviewed the allegations of drug use made during the trial but Scotland Yard said no further action would be taken.
A witness told the Daily Mail that the self-styled 'domestic goddess' attempted to board a British Airways flight from London on Sunday morning but was turned away.
"She didn't seem to say much but she did not look happy," the onlooker said.
"She could not get on the flight so she had to turn around and leave."
Lawson's co-host on The Taste, American chef Anthony Bourdain, tweeted: "I am absolutely mortified with embarrassment over the cruelty and hypocrisy of US actions re: #Nigella travel. Unbelievable."
A spokeswoman for the US Embassy said: "There are several ways of legally travelling into the United States and Ms Lawson has been invited to come to the Embassy and apply for a visa for travel to the US.
"We understand she has professional requirements for US travel and these matters are generally handled routinely and expeditiously, so stand by."
The spokeswoman said the embassy was unable to comment on the reasons that someone might be turned away.
The US has a strict visa policy and authorities are able to ban anyone who has committed a drugs offence even if they have not been convicted.
However, Lawson has visited America, where she has a successful career, since her court appearance.
The mother-of-two appeared on US TV show Good Morning America to promoteThe Taste but also spoke at length about the trial of Elisabetta and Francesca Grillo, who were acquitted.
British Airways would not comment on the incident and told Sky News: "Due to data protection laws, we cannot comment on individual customers."