Saatchi describes his grip on his wife's throat as 'a playful tiff' and insists they made up by the time they were home.
Nigella Lawson's husband comes to his own defense after he was pictured holding his wife by her throat during a heated argument at a restaurant in London recently. Advertising honcho and art collector Charles Saatchi insists he didn't hurt the female celebrity chef.
"About a week ago, we were sitting outside a restaurant having an intense debate about the children, and I held Nigella's neck repeatedly while attempting to emphasize my point," 70-year-old Saatchi explained in a statement to the Evening Standard.
Lawson was seen looking visibly upset in the pictures and taking off in tears, but Saatchi claimed "there was no grip, it was a playful tiff." He added, "The pictures are horrific but give a far more drastic and violent impression of what took place. Nigella's tears were because we both hate arguing, not because she had been hurt."
Regardless of his defense, the incident is being investigated by authorities. Scotland Yard says that officers from the Community Safety Unit at Westminster are "aware of the Sunday People article which was published on Sunday 16 June."
"Enquiries are in hand to establish the facts in order to assess whether an investigation is necessary," the statement says.
Lawson keeps silent about the alleged domestic violence. Her spokesperson only says, "Nigella and her children have moved out of the family home." No arrest has been made and no complaint has been filed either.
Saatchi claimed Nigella went into hiding due to paparazzi. "The paparazzi were congregated outside our house after the story broke [Sunday] morning, so I told Nigella to take the kids off till the dust settled," he said. Despite their intense argument, he said, "We had made up by the time we were home."