KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — A previously registered sex offender from Blount County has been sentenced to 45 years in federal prison on charges of child exploitation, according to the district attorney’s office.  

Tywan Montrease Sykes, 46, was convicted in March of charges of production of child pornography, enticement of a minor for illegal sex, possession of child pornography and committing those offenses while being required to register as a sex offender. 

“The lengthy sentence in this case shows the significant punishment child predators face for their incomprehensible actions,” said Homeland Security Investigations agent Jerry C. Templet Jr.  

The Blount County District Attorney’s Office said the investigation started after a Facebook user notified the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children to messages sent to a 15-year-old girl soliciting her for sex and child pornography. The NCMEC then informed the Knoxville Police Department’s Internet Crimes Against Children unit.  

KPD located the girl with the help of the local Department of Children’s Services. They interviewed her and within 48 hours arrested Sykes.  

Sykes was previously convicted of statutory rape in 1998 and aggravated statutory rape in 2012.