The Associated Press December 1, 2010, 12:04PM ET

Dakota Beef's suit against former CEO dismissed

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) -- A federal judge has dismissed a South Dakota organic beef company's lawsuit against its former chief executive that had accused him of forming his new venture in violation of a noncompete agreement.

In June, Howard Venture LLC, doing business as Dakota Beef, filed the federal lawsuit against Scott D. Lively and his Lively Foods LLC.

Dakota Beef in 2009 fell into foreclosure, and Howard Venture purchased its assets and name.

Lively's attorney in documents argued that Howard Venture was never Lively's employer, so it was not entitled to enforce the agreement.

The suit also accused Lively of profiting from side ventures and running up personal charges on a company credit card.

Lively's attorney filed a counterclaim saying the company owed Lively compensation and defamed him.

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