The wife of a MP John Hemming said today that she had 'no recollection' of stealing a kitten from of her husband's mistress.

Christine Heming, 53, was caught on CCTV stealing four-month old kitten Beauty from the home of Emily Cox.

When it dawned on her that she had taken the tabby kitten, Mrs Hemming "tries her best" to return it, jurors heard.

Mrs Hemming, who married Liberal Democrat MP John Hemming in 1981, denies trying burgle Ms Cox's home last year, three days after she had kicked her husband out of thier home, telling him to go as a present to her.

Mrs Hemming, a town and country planner, told jurors that she went round to the house to drop off some post for Mr Hemming. "I don't recall stealing the cat. I don't recall picking up the cat" said Mrs Hemming.

"I had no intention of stealing a cat before I went to the property, when I was at the property, when I left the property, and subsequently.

"I didn't know there was a cat in the property... I have no recollection of taking the cat, and I tried my best to return the cat when it dawned on me that I had it.''

She then returned the cat to a nearby address in Moseley, Birmingham.

Under questioning from defence Barrister Gerald Bermingham, Mrs Hemming told the court she went round to the home of Ms Cox to drop off seven letters at her home after arguing on the phone with Mr Hemming.

"To tell you the truth, I was very much in a panic," she said. "I put my hand on the door handle and it opened and I took some steps in.

"Then it just dawned on me like dread - oh my God, I'm in the house."

"I don't recall taking the cat," she told the court. "I don't recall picking up the cat."

The case continues.