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UK celebrity chef Nigella Lawson turned away from U.S.-bound flight

By Laura Smith-Spark and Lindsay Isaac, CNN
April 3, 2014 -- Updated 2028 GMT (0428 HKT)
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Lawson is prevented from boarding flight to Los Angeles, U.S. Embassy says
  • U.S. Embassy declines to give reason, says Lawson has been invited to apply for a visa
  • Lawson admitted limited cocaine use during trial of two ex-personal assistants last year

London (CNN) -- UK celebrity chef Nigella Lawson, whose private life hit the headlines when she testified about drug use last year, was prevented from boarding a flight from London to the United States, a U.S. official said Thursday.

Lawson was turned back from boarding British Airways Flight 283 from London Heathrow to Los Angeles on March 30, said Lynne Platt, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Embassy in London.

Platt would not say why Lawson had been stopped. A representative for Lawson declined to comment.

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Lawson made headlines late last year when she admitted to drug use during the fraud trial of two former personal assistants to Lawson.

Platt said Lawson had been invited to come to the U.S. Embassy in London to apply for a visa for travel to the United States.

"We understand she has professional requirements for U.S. travel," she said. "These matters are generally handled routinely and expeditiously."

Lawson, whose divorce from millionaire art dealer Charles Saatchi also made front page news last year, has appeared as a judge on the ABC show "The Taste" in the United States.

The second season of the show wrapped up in February.

READ: Nigella Lawson faces police drugs investigation

READ: Nigella Lawson: Flirtatious celebrity chef

CNN's Andrew Carey contributed to this report.

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