MADISON — The man arrested in a$100 million Ponzi scheme was often alone in an unassuming office off Main Street a long the railroad with his dog.

Arthur Lamar Adams, a former Madison resident, was charged Tuesday with two counts of wire fraud and one count of bank fraud in connection with a scheme to defraud investors using his company Madison Timber Properties LLC, U.S. Attorney Mike Hurst announced this week.

The 58-year-old Jackson man is said to have operated one of the largest Ponzi schemes in state history.

One of Adams’ business neighbors, who asked not to be identified, said he saw Adams come and go from the office daily, and the news Tuesday came as a surprise. The neighbor said Adams had a routine schedule and was often alone in the office with a dog.

“He was a nice guy,” the neighbor said. “I never really knew what he did.”

The only evidence of Adams’ building being a business office was a Greater Jackson Chamber Partnership sticker on the door. According to the Chamber website, Madison Timber Properties LLC is a member.

Inside the office, located at 742 Magnolia St., Suite A, a gentleman who leased a room in the building said, “No comment,” when asked about Adams.

Calls to the phone number listed for Madison Timber Properties were sent to voicemail.

Adams appeared before U.S. Magistrate Judge Linda R. Anderson Tuesday for an initial appearance an arraignment. He was released on a $25,000 bond and will be confined to his home using GPS monitoring.

He faces a maximum of 70 years in federal prison and fines totaling $1.5 million if convicted.

“Greed is not good,” Hurst said in a statement released Tuesday. “Greed drove this individual to lie, cheat and steal from fellow Mississippians, and led him to prey upon others outside our state, simply to personally benefit himself. While this may be one of the largest Ponzi scheme ever committed in our state, our citizens can rest assured that these criminal actions by this defendant sadly affecting so many people will be met with swift and certain justice.

He added, “We will continue to pursue this case and all the evidence until all crimes have been discovered, all criminals have been brought to justice, and all victims have been assisted,”

The scheme is said to have originated as early as 2011 and continued up until last month, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Adams solicited millions of dollars from investors who believed they would be buying and selling timber rights for a huge return of investment. Instead, according to Hurst, Adams used the funds for personal benefit, in addition to continuing the Ponzi scheme.

“As part of his fraudulent scheme, Adams falsely represented to investors that Madison Timber Properties was in the business of buying timber rights from landowners and then selling the timber rights to lumber mills at a higher price,” Hurst explained. “The object of the scheme was to cause individuals to invest in loans that purportedly were for the purpose of financing contracts for the purchase of timber rights to be sold to lumber mills at a higher price. However, neither Adams nor Madison Timber Properties had such timber rights or contracts with lumber mills, except in only a few instances.”

Hurst said the loans guaranteed investors a 12- to 13-percent return over a period of 12-13 months.

“We know that investors are anxious to learn whatever they can about the status of their investments and the assets of Madison Timber Properties LLC,” the statement from Hurst continued. “Although we cannot provide further details at this time, please be assured that all those involved are working diligently to investigate this matter and to locate and preserve assets that can be used for restitution to defrauded investors.”