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NJ Arbitrator Awards Company $2M After Vikings' Owners Default On Housing Deal

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – The Vikings' CEO, president and vice chairman have been ordered to pay $2 million to their former business partners after violating a building contract, according to court documents.

A New Jersey arbitrator ruled that the Wilfs--Zygi, Mark and Leonard--violated a building contract the businessmen held with their cousins, Ralph and Norman Mitschele, when they halted construction on an unfinished housing project.

According to court documents, the Wilfs first signed on to a joint venture with the Mitscheles in 2000. The Wilfs owned the New Jersey-based Northfield Livingston Developers, and the Mitscheles owned Claimants Deerco, Inc. and ExEx, Inc.

According to court documents, the joint venture included a housing project, called Hillside Heights, which consisted of 40 lots that the Wilfs' company agreed to build on.

In 2011, the Wilfs halted construction after 31 of the 40 houses were complete in the Hillside Heights project.

According to court documents, the Wilfs halted construction after disputes between the two parties came to a head.

The arbitrator determined that the Wilfs' refusal to continue work was a "material breach of the joint venture."

The arbitrator ordered the liquidation of the joint venture and ruled that the Mitscheles' original contribution of $2 million be paid back.

This is the second time this year that the Wilfs' business practices have been called to attention.


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