TYLER – A 38-year-old Tyler man has been sentenced to 45 years in federal prison for child exploitation violations. Mark Rushton Lawless pleaded guilty on September 5, 2013 to possession of child pornography, transportation of a child to engage in sexual activity, production of child pornography, and aggravated sexual abuse of a child. Lawless was sentenced to 45 years in federal prison Friday in Tyler by U.S. District Judge Michael Schneider.
According to information presented in court, on February 12, 2013, Lawless was found in possession of child pornography, specifically material involving a child younger than 12 years old engaged in sexually explicit conduct. Lawless admitted that on Dec. 28, 2012, he transported a minor across state lines for the purpose of engaging in sexual activity and sexually abusing a child younger than 12 years of age. Lawless also admitted that on Jan. 2, 2013, he enticed or coerced a minor to engage in sexually explicit conduct for the purpose of creating child pornography. Lawless was indicted on February 27, 2013 and charged with child pornography violations.