For the record, I’d like to make it clear that my extended stay in Great Britain was hassle-free and I didn’t have to sleep with any civil servants to get a special stamp on my passport. From tomorrow’s Independent and Colin Brown :

David Blunkett’s cabinet career hung in the balance last night after he ordered an independent inquiry into allegations by his former lover, Kimberly Quinn, that he abused his powers as Home Secretary to fast-track a visa for her Filipina nanny.

Downing Street was standing by Mr Blunkett but a cabinet colleague said: “We don’t know if David can survive.”

The Home Secretary’s friends accused Mrs Quinn, wife of a publisher, of waging a vendetta against Mr Blunkett because DNA tests proved he is the father of her two-year-old son, William, rather than her husband, Stephen. Mr Blunkett also claims to be the father of a second child, due in the new year.

Mrs Quinn’s most serious allegation came in an e-mail claiming that Mr Blunkett helped to fast-track an application for a visa for Leoncia “Luz” Casalme, 36, who was challenged by a newspaper about it. If that is proved, Mr Blunkett could be forced to resign.

(Blunkett, shown with one of his bitches)

(Jim Plunkett, who has nothing to do with this story)

The leaked e-mail by Mrs Quinn to a friend on Thursday last week said: “I have had Luz on the phone very tearful, saying that she had been contacted about the passport [visa] application that David fast-tracked for her … he’s so paranoid he’ll think it’s me and try and nail me.”

Mrs Quinn also claimed Mr Blunkett had given her two first-class rail tickets assigned to him for his work as an MP; put pressure on the US embassy for a passport for her son to travel with Mr Blunkett on holiday in France; had used a government driver to take Mrs Quinn to his home in Derbyshire for weekend trysts; took Mrs Quinn to Spain with a driver and four security officers; tipped off Mrs Quinn that her American parents should avoid Newark airport because of a security scare; and stationed police outside her £2m Mayfair home as protection against May Day rioters.