A 50-year old Kissimmee man has been sentenced to 40 years in federal prison for taking pictures of a minor through the crack in a door on his cell phone while she was leaving the shower. U.S. District Judge Carlos E. Mendoza sentenced Rafael Antonio Bracero-Navas for sexual exploitation of a child and to forfeit the cellphone that he had used to commit the offense. A jury had found Bracero-Navas guilty of seven counts of sexual exploitation of a child on March 4, 2022.

According to testimony and evidence presented at trial, Bracero-Navas used a cellphone to take explicit photos of the minor’s pubic area. He did so covertly from outside a bathroom door, taking pictures through the crack under the door, as the minor was stepping out of the shower. Although Bracero-Navas had deleted the full-sized images from his phone, thumbnail images remained and were later discovered by law enforcement.

In addition to taking the photos, Bracero-Navas had on multiple occasions engaged in other sexually abusive behaviors toward the minor, including repeatedly forcibly kissing the girl against her will and touching her genitals.

“As heartbreaking as it is to work these kinds of investigations, it’s rewarding to see the lengthy prison sentences handed down to these sexual predators,” said FBI Tampa Division Special Agent in Charge David Walker. “The FBI is committed to the work of exposing these abusers and ensuring they are brought to justice.”  

This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Osceola County Sheriff’s Office. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Emily C. L. Chang and Amanda S. Daniels.

This is another case brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.justice.gov/psc.