13:30 11 September 2006
The 'X Factor' has been plunged into "chaos" after it emerged a singer from boy band Avenue had already been signed by Simon Cowell's record label.
Jamie Tinkler was signed last year by Sony BMG, but later dropped due to a lack of interest.
Tinkler, 25, has been accused of breaching the show's rules after he managed to get through to the second round of auditions as a member of Avenue.
A source said: "The fact that Jamie had a record deal before 'X Factor' has thrown the whole show into chaos. How Simon didn't know about this is incredible. It makes the whole show a sham."
Avenue had already sparked controversy after it was revealed the group had been had been put together by producer Ashley Tabor and sent to the auditions for public exposure.
According to the show's rules, contestants are not allowed to have managers or record deals and TV bosses are said to be furious with the situation.
However, it has been argued that Jamie has not breached 'X Factor' rules, because his recording contract has expired.
A source said: "As long as an artist doesn't have a current recording contract, no rules have been broken. If they had a deal in the past and it's expired, that is within the rules."
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