Stadium authority hires veteran litigator to review stadium deal

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August 13, 2013 // UPDATED 3:12 pm - August 20, 2013
By: Sarah McKenzie
Sarah McKenzie

In light of the recent New Jersey cour ruling finding the Wilf family guilty of fraud among other things in a real estate dispute, the Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority (MSFA) has hired Dorsey & Whitney's Peter W. Carter to oversee a "due diligence review" of the stadium financing plan.

Carter is co-chair of the firm's Securities Litigation & Enforcement practice. He has worked on several RICO cases and done litigation due diligence for many Fortune 250 companies.

“Dorsey will be assisted by FTI Consulting, an international forensic accounting firm that will perform a thorough financial due diligence review," MSFA chair Michele Kelm-Helgen said in a statement. "FTI provides financial forensics related to accounting and financial reporting, regulatory scrutiny and anti-corruption inquiries.”

The work plan for the group includes the following: 
—  Perform due diligence on the New Jersey litigation;
— Review other Wilf and Wilf related litigation;
— Perform extensive background checks;
— Review the NFL owner application due diligence; and
— Financial due diligence by FTI.

While the due diligence proceeds, the MSFA and Vikings will continue to negotiate agreements outlining various business relationships. The MSFA board has postponed a plan to finalize those agreements on Aug. 23, Kelm-Helgen said.

The work is not expected to impact the stadium's construction timeline.

When Gov. Mark Dayton was asked about how the New Jersey court ruling has changed his view of the Wilfs during an interview with Kerri Miller on MPR, he said it has "undermined my confidence in their veracity." However, he said he wants to push ahead to see the stadium and Ryan development project go forward.