Questions are being raised once again about why Toronto Mayor Rob Ford was allowed to enter the United States after admitting he smoked crack cocaine.
There was fresh criticism for the United States Customs and Border Protection Thursday as Anthony Bourdain tweeted that his The Taste cooking competition co-host Nigella Lawson was not allowed on a flight from London to Los Angeles.
“Toronto mayor, Rob Ford? Welcome to the USA. Nigella Lawson? No. REALLY? Absolutely appalling misuse of our system. And by whom? How?” Mr. Bourdain tweeted Thursday. The tweet received over 800 retweets and 600 favourites.
Last year, Ms. Lawson admitted occasional cocaine use. The U.S. Embassy confirmed that she was denied permission to board a flight to the United States over the weekend but did not say why she was not allowed in the country.
U.S. authorities can deny entry for many reasons, including drug use.
In a blanket statement about the entry of non-U.S. citizens who have admitted drug use, Customs and Border Protection said, “While we are not at liberty to discuss an individual’s processing due to the Privacy Act, our CBP officers are charged with enforcing not only immigration and customs laws, but they also enforce over 400 laws for 40 other agencies and have stopped thousands of violators of U.S. law.”
Last month, Mr. Ford travelled to Hollywood, ostensibly to bring in business for Toronto`s film industry. He also appeared on Jimmy Kimmel’s late-night talk show.
Toronto Police spokesman Mark Pugash would not comment on the probe involving Mr. Ford or whether he had been contacted by border authorities, saying: “We do not discuss ongoing investigations.”
With a report from Ann Hui and files from The Associated Press