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Press Release

Woman Indicted on Child Exploitation Charges

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Puerto Rico

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico – A teacher from Mayagüez, PR, was arrested by Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) on criminal charges related to child exploitation conduct.

On February 29, 2024, a federal grand jury in the District of Puerto Rico indicted Kiara Ramos Meléndez, 29, with one count of Coercion and Enticement of a Minor, and one count of Receipt of Child Exploitation Material. Today, the Puerto Rico Crimes Against Children Taskforce (PRCACTF) led by HSI, arrested Ramos Meléndez.

According to court documents, from November of 2022 through October of 2023, the defendant used her cellular phone, as well as internet instant messaging services to persuade and entice a male minor, between 13 and 14 years of age, to engage in sexual activity and to request and receive sexually explicit images of the minor. From November of 2022 through April of 2023, Ramos Meléndez received sexually explicit images of the male minor via WhatsApp.

“The U.S. Attorney’s Office will continue to work with its law enforcement partners to aggressively investigate and prosecute persons who exploit minors for sexual purposes,” said W. Stephen Muldrow, United States Attorney for the District of Puerto Rico. “The defendant, who was entrusted by the community to protect and teach our children, violated that sacred trust by assaulting a child. As this case demonstrates, we will aggressively target those who prey on children.”

Rebecca González-Ramos, HSI San Juan’s Special Agent in Charge, said: “Individuals in a position of public trust have the responsibility to protect our most vulnerable. A teacher is one of the first lines of protection of our minors. Predators don’t have a profile, they come in all genders, it is our job to investigate them all and protect our children. HSI is vigilant, and we will not let one individual tarnish the name of all the amazing teachers that have a real commitment to teach and most importantly protect their students.”

If convicted for the charges of coercion and enticement of a minor to engage in illicit sexual conduct, she faces a mandatory minimum term of imprisonment of 10 years up to life, and for receipt of child pornography she faces a mandatory minimum term of imprisonment of 5 years up to 20 years, all charges followed by a term of supervised release after imprisonment of no less than 5 years up to life. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

Assistant US Attorney (AUSA) Daynelle Álvarez Lora from the Child Exploitation and Immigration Unit is prosecuting the case.

For more information about HSI’s efforts to protect children from sexual predators, visit iGuardians™: Combating Child Predators  and to denounce suspicious activities call 787-729-6969.

For more information about HSI’s efforts to protect children from online sexual abuse, visit

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice. Led by U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and the Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to better locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit

An indictment is merely an allegation and all defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.


Updated March 6, 2024

Project Safe Childhood
Press Release Number: 2024-014