How much are the Vikings' owners worth? We may find out as part of the resolution of a New Jersey lawsuit.
The Star Tribune reports a judge who earlier ruled that Zygi and Mark Wilf defrauded their business partners in a a real estate deal now says information about their personal wealth should be released as part of the case. But Superior Court Judge Deanne Wilson agreed to keep the numbers confidential while the Wilfs appeal her decision, the newspaper says.
Legal wrangling over the New Jersey case has been going on for 21 years. But a turning point came last month when Judge Wilson ruled the Wilfs violated racketeering laws and used fraudulent bookkeeping to avoid having to share revenue with their partners.
The ruling caused some consternation among state officials, particularly Gov. Mark Dayton. It led the Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority to order more scrutiny of the Wilfs' finances, to ensure the team owners can uphold their commitment to sharing the cost of a new $975 million Vikings stadium. The audit should be finished this week, but the Authority's chair has already said it found the Wilfs will have no trouble making their stadium payments.
The Wilfs have been close-to-the-vest about their financial information. The Legislature voted to exempt the stadium project from the Minnesota Data Practices Act -- a move that still rankles some at the Capitol. The Star Tribune reports that state Rep. Mary Liz Holberg protested the secrecy surrounding stadium funding by introducing a bill on the issue during Monday's special session. Holberg's move was purely symbolic, since lawmakers had agreed to vote only on a bill allocating disaster relief to storm-stricken counties.