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Lawyer for alleged 'third crasher' Carlos Allen admits he attended White House dinner, denies he crashed

A lawyer for the alleged "third crasher" claims his client went to the White House state dinner after receiving an invitation and still maintains that he was an invited guest.

A. Scott Bolden, a veteran Washington white-collar defense attorney, did not provide many details about how Carlos Allen -- whose presence at the dinner is part of an ongoing Secret Service investigation -- came to attend the dinner, despite not being on the White House guest list, nor did he provide evidence of an invitation.

But Bolden said that Allen, 39, has been interviewed by the Secret Service and is continuing to cooperate with their investigation.

The Secret Service on Monday announced that a third, yet previously undisclosed, person had made it into the state dinner honoring Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh made infamous by uninvited guests Tareq and Michaele Salahi.

Allen had previously denied to reporters that he had even attended the dinner or that he was the man being investigated by the agency, as the Washington Post reported late Monday. His appearance at the Nov. 24 dinner -- arriving with the official Indian delegation that had been screened by the State Department, according to agency -- exposed an entirely new area of weakness in White House security than that revealed by the Salahis, who walked in with authorized attendees through the main entrance.

Bolden described his client as publisher of an online magazine, which he said profiles the philanthropic pursuits of "the rich and powerful," denying the Post's description of him as party promoter -- the parties he throws, Bolden said, are in conjunction with his magazine. "He is not a party promoter, he's an entrepreneur, and his site gets several thousand hits a month."

Bolden also said that his client -- unlike the Salahis, who merely mingled at the pre-dinner reception -- actually stayed for the dinner. "As far as he knew he was invited and he was supposed to be there, and no one treated him any differently." Bolden added: "He clearly vehemently denies being a gatecrasher."

The White House has declined to comment on Allen, instead referring back to the Secret Service statement describing him as an individual "not on the White House guest list," who, unlike other Indian delegation members, was not processed through their computer system.

Also, Bolden denied that his client has any close connection with the Salahis, despite a much-circulated photo of Allen with Michaele Salahi at a party last summer. (See more here.) "He didn't have any communications with them about the dinner. He didn't see them at the dinner. He attended the [same] event. But the connection ends there."

By The Reliable Source  |  January 5, 2010; 4:08 PM ET
Categories:  44: Obama's Washington , Politics , White House crashers  
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