America’s most successful party crashers, Michaele and Tareq Salahi, who stormed the gates of a White House state dinner and somehow managed to get in, may soon be facing criminal charges, according to the Secret Service.
Secret Service spokesman Jim Mackin says the agency is moving closer to beginning a criminal investigation. He says that’s one reason the Secret Service hasn’t yet explained what happened when Michaele and Tareq Salahi arrived at the security checkpoint Tuesday for the dinner honoring Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.
One likely charge is 18 U.S.C. § 1036, “Entry by false pretenses to any real property, vessel, or aircraft of the United States or secure area of any airport or seaport,” which prohibits:
Whoever, by any fraud or false pretense, enters or attempts to enter–
(1) any real property belonging in whole or in part to, or leased by, the United States;
(2) any vessel or aircraft belonging in whole or in part to, or leased by, the United States;
(3) any secure or restricted area of any seaport, designated as secure in an approved security plan, as required under section 70103 of title 46, United States Code, and the rules and regulations promulgated under that section; or
(4) any secure area of any airport,
shall be punished as provided in subsection (b) of this section.
(b) The punishment for an offense under subsection (a) of this section is–
(1) a fine under this title or imprisonment for not more than 10 years, or both, if the offense is committed with the intent to commit a felony; or
(2) a fine under this title or imprisonment for not more than 6 months, or both, in any other case.
(c) As used in this section–
(1) the term “secure area” means an area