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Trial here Monday for prospective Viking buyer

Prospective Minnesota Vikings owner Reggie Fowler is set to have his day in St. Croix County Court on a civil claim that he is responsible for nearly $200,000 in bills for cheese.

Trial is scheduled for Monday, March 7, in the case brought by Cady Cheese Factory and Cady Creek Farms, both of Wilson, against the Arizona entrepreneur and two companies with which he is associated. The case will be heard by Judge Eric Lundell.

The suit, filed in December 2001, alleges that Fowler, Spiral Inc. and Delicom Foods Inc. owe $157,802 to Cady Cheese Factory and $38,400 to Cady Creek Farms.

In response to written interrogatories, Fowler and Spiral's attorney claim the cheese was ordered by Delicom Foods and that while Fowler bought assets from Delicom, he never owned stock in the company. Fowler and his attorney claim Fowler's company, Spiral Inc., didn't do business with either Cady Cheese or Cady Creek Farm.

An affidavit signed by Cady Cheese President Dale Marcott contradicts that.

Marcott said his company sold cheese to the defendants for a period of years and that there were significant delays in payment.

He said that while the orders were generally placed by and delivered to Delicom Foods, the bills were paid by various entities including Spiral Delicom LLC, Spiral Supplies LLC, Delicom LLC and Delicom Foods Inc.

In his affidavit, Marcott said he had numerous discussions with Fowler, "and on no less than three separate occasions," Fowler personally promised that he stood behind the orders and that he would see that bills were paid.

In a reply Fowler claimed he never told any representative of Cady that he was liable for any products received from Cady.

The Cady Cheese part of the case involves two shipments of Colby, gold 'n jack, Monterey jack and hot pepper jack cheese shipped to Delicom Foods, Chandler, Ariz., on Oct. 5 and Oct. 22, 2001.

Each shipment cost about $78,900. Cady received a check from Delicom for $78,968, but payment was stopped on that check.

The Cady Creek Farm portion of the case involves two orders for cheese placed in September 2001.

During a motion hearing in fall 2003, Fowler's lawyer, Brent R. Johnson of Hudson, argued that there is no evidence that Fowler or Spiral owe anything.

At least two earlier trial dates - one in October 2002 and another in February 2003 - were cancelled.

Spring Valley attorney Jorv Gavic, who represents Cady Cheese and Cady Creek, declined to comment Monday, saying it's his policy not to comment on cases in progress.