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Press Release

Youngsville Man and Former Educator Sentenced to Federal Prison on Child Pornography Charge

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Western District of Louisiana

LAFAYETTE, La.Angel Rafael Cardona, 35, of Youngsville, Louisiana, was sentenced today on child pornography charges, announced United States Attorney Brandon B. Brown. United States District Judge David C. Joseph sentenced Cardona to 120 months (10 years) in prison, followed by 10 years of supervised release.

Cardona was charged in an indictment with one count of using a facility to cause a minor to engage in criminal sexual activity and he pleaded guilty to the charge in January of this year. Evidence in this case revealed that in June 2023, Cardona began communicating through Whisper, an online chat application, with a user who identified as a 13-year-old female. Unbeknownst to Cardona, the user was an undercover law enforcement agent. Cardona sent a direct message to the user inquiring about a post she had made about summer school. Two days later, Cardona asked the user if they had an account on another online chat site and the agent responded that they did have a Kik account, and he then contacted the undercover minor female through that application. These communications between the two continued from June 8, 2023, to July 10, 2023, until the user told Cardona that the Kik application kept crashing and to contact her through text message and provided a phone number. The text messages between Cardona and the undercover agent continued through July 24, 2023. 

Conversations about sex, sexual experiences, and the undercover agent’s body were brought up by Cardona throughout this time period. On numerous occasions, the undercover agent made reference to her age of 13. The conversations regarding her sexual inexperience increased over time becoming more graphic and detailed. Eventually, Cardona began asking the undercover agent for pictures of herself and asked for images containing sexual material. On July 11 and 13, 2023, Cardona specifically and explicitly asked for the undercover agent to produce and send him child pornography. The undercover agent gave excuses of her mother’s presence in the home for not complying and Cardona instructed her to be sneaky about it in order to create the images.

He brought up the idea of meeting in person on numerous occasions and eventually they agreed to meet at Veterans Park in Lafayette on July 24, 2023. The defendant admitted that he intended to meet the person he believed to be a minor female for the purpose of engaging in some form of sexual activity that would be a crime under the laws of the state of Louisiana.

The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys J. Luke Walker and Craig R. Bordelon.

This case is part of Project Safe Childhood, a U.S. Department of Justice nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood combines 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

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Updated April 25, 2024

Project Safe Childhood