Teen who pretended to be 12 gets 20 years for preying on kids

DALLAS — A Texas man who at age 17 posed as a 12-year-old boy to attend a Fort Worth-area elementary school last year to prey on children for illicit purposes was sentenced to 20 years in prison, court officials said on Tuesday.

Ricardo Lugo, now 18 and sentenced as an adult, received the maximum term for indecency with a child, according to court officials.

Tarrant County Criminal District Court Judge Elizabeth Beach also sentenced Lugo on Monday to 10 years of probation on 10 counts of promoting and possessing child pornography, they said.

He must serve at least 10 years in prison before he is eligible for parole. He will serve his sentences consecutively.

Lugo had previously pleaded guilty to the charges, according to his attorney Daniel Young.

“Lugo was a wolf in sheep’s clothing,” said prosecutor Marty Purselley.

“He’s a pedophile who was able to get past parents and teachers in order to have access to and exploit children using every means at his disposal,” Purselley said.

Last November, police in the Fort Worth suburb of Hurst arrested Lugo and accused him of enrolling in a Hurst elementary school under a false name while his alleged accomplice, Randy Wesson, posed as his father.

Investigators found images and a video of students from the elementary school on Lugo’s phone, police said.

Wesson, 29, has been transferred to federal custody. He pleaded guilty in a U.S. court in February to one count of possession of child pornography and one count of receipt of child pornography. He has yet to be sentenced.

Wesson faces 20 years in federal prison on the possession charge and five to 20 years on the receipt of pornography charge.

A raid of his home uncovered files of child pornography, police said.

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