Charles Saatchi, the advertising mogul and former husband of TV cook Nigella Lawson, has described himself as "utterly bereft" that an email he sent to his ex-wife saying she was "off her head on drugs" has been made public in the court case that has seen the couple's former assistants on trial for fraud.

Nigella Lawson
Nigella Lawson's Personal Assistants Have Claimed They She Regularly Took Drugs.

Sisters Elisabetta and Francesca Grillo stand on trial for using credit cards on loan to them from Saatchi and Lawson to spend £685,000 on luxury goods and holidays. They have alleged that they were given such free use of the credit cards in exchange for non-disclosure of Lawson's drug habit. Saatchi claims that Lawson was "very cross" with him when he told her that he had confronted the Grillos about their alleged misuse of his company credit card and when he suggested that they pay back the money and live rent-free in Nigella's Battersea home.

He told jurors: "She was very cross with me and she said, 'How could you do that? I would never have them in my house again.' And I said, 'I'm really sorry. I was trying to cause the least friction possible and didn't want a lot of disruption. Sorry if I misread it'."

Nigella Lawson Charles Saatchi
The Sisters Spent Thousands Of Saatchi & Lawson's Money.

According to the couple's accountant, Rahul Gajjar, the women became "agitated" when it was suggested that they pay back the money they owed and he alleged that Elisabetta, 41, complained that they were "being treated worse than Filipino slaves."

The court were read an email that Saatchi had sent to Lawson: "Nigella, I was sent these by a newspaper and I can only laugh at your sorry depravity. Of course now the Grillos will get off on the basis that you were so off your head on drugs that you allowed the sisters to spend whatever they liked and yes I believe every word the Grillos have said, who after all only stole money."

The email continued: "But I'm sure it was all great fun and now everything is perfect - bravo, you have become a celebrity hostess on a global TV game show. And you got the pass you desired, free to heartily enjoy all the drugs you want, forever. Classy," via The Guardian.

Charles Saatchi
Charles Saatchi Has Denied Any Knowledge Of His Wife Taking Drugs.

When questioned about the email, Saatchi replied: "I'm utterly bereft that this private email to Nigella has come back to haunt us both. That's all I have to say. The stories that the Grillos were parading was that Nigella had a severe cocaine habit that stretched back a very long time for the entirety of our marriage.

"What I was speculating here was that the Grillos would use this as a defence," he added.

Regardless of what could be inferred from the email, Saatchi has denied any knowledge of Lawson's drug use. "I have never, never seen any evidence of Nigella taking any drug whatsoever. I want to be helpful, but I genuinely have no real knowledge at all," he iterated.

The Grillo sisters deny fraud.