Indians did not invite me to US state dinner: 3rd gatecrasher
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Last Updated: Thursday, January 07, 2010, 12:55
  
Washington: A lawyer for the alleged third White House "party crasher" says his client believes he was invited to President Barack Obama's state dinner for Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, but the invitation was not from the Indian side.

A Scott Bolden, a Washington defence attorney, told NBC News on Wednesday that Carlos Allen attended the November 24 reception, the dinner, and the performance at the White House but could not identify who invited him to the state dinner.

"He has no idea," Bolden said. "He had an invitation mailed to him."

The Secret Service has said that Allen was not an invited guest.

Allen's attorney also contradicted reports about how Allen came to join the official Indian delegation at the Willard Hotel, where Manmohan Singh was staying. An administration official cited by NBC News said that Allen sneaked past State Department protocol officers by pretending to be part of the official delegation.

Bolden claimed that "it was a mere coincidence" that Allen happened to meet up with the Indian delegation at the hotel. "We deny the Indian delegation invited him," Bolden was quoted as saying. "No one from the Indian business delegation invited him."

"It was a pure coincidence that he was at the Willard," Bolden added. "He had an invite and he hopped a ride with them. There is nothing sinister about this."

The Indian embassy has already denied any connection with Allen. "The person is not known to the Indian embassy. We did not seek or facilitate any access for this person," an embassy spokesman said in a statement.

Allen is now the third individual to allegedly slip past security into the state dinner without being on the official guest list. But Allen's attorney said his client is very different than the party-crashing Salahi couple.

"This wasn't about social climbing or crashing the most important party in (Washington) DC," he told NBC. "It was part social, part work. He helps wealthy and important and powerful people all the time."

Allen is the owner of Hush Galleria, an event-planning business that says on its Web site that it connects "up and coming individuals with elite individuals in luxurious environments."

IANS


First Published: Thursday, January 07, 2010, 12:55


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