JACKSON, Miss. (AP) – A Mississippi federal judge is naming a receiver to collect assets and repay victims of a $100-million-plus fraud.
U.S. District Judge Carlton Reeves on Friday appointed New Orleans lawyer Alysson Mills after seeking applications to fill the role. Reeves emphasized diversity in selecting the receiver, drawing some complaints.
Mills will try to recover assets held by Arthur Lamar Adams, who pleaded guilty May 9 to wire fraud. The 58-year-old Jackson resident persuaded investors to loan him money, promising high returns from bogus rights to cut timber.
A judge froze Adams’ assets in a civil suit brought by the SEC. Reeves has been authorizing payments to ensure assets are maintained.
Mills has been a bankruptcy trustee for a Mississippi public hospital and represented Louisiana retirees who lost more than $50 million.
Arthur Adams convicted for his role in organizing a Ponzi scheme involving the sale of timber rights is in federal court for sentencing.
Judge Carlton Reeves will review the information from attorneys before issuing Adams sentence.
According to the U.S. Attorney’s office, the scheme began as far back as 2011. Adams was indicted this past May.
Prosecutors successfully proved Adams was responsible for soliciting millions from investors in more than 14 states. He then invested the money for personal gain and used the proceeds to pay back past investors. Adams defrauded as many as 250 investors in excess of $100 million.
Investigators have not announced whether other individuals associated with Madison Timber may also be arrested in connection with the case.