Josh Duggar Sentenced to More Than 12 Years for Child Porn

Former reality TV star and Christian activist Josh Duggar was sentenced Wednesday to 12 ½ years in a federal prison for downloading and possessing child pornography, according to a U.S. Department of Justice press release.

A federal jury in Arkansas convicted Duggar in December 2021 of receiving and possessing material showing minors in sexually explicit conduct. The maximum sentence for the conviction was 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000.

Duggar’s team had reportedly asked for a five-year sentence but expressed gratitude about the outcome.

“We are grateful the judge dismissed Count 2 and rejected the Government’s request for a 240-month sentence,” Duggar’s lawyer Justin K. Gelfand told USA Today. “We look forward to continuing the fight on appeal.”

According to the U.S. Sun, Duggar had no reaction when he received the judgment.

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In a statement posted online, Duggar’s sister, Jill Dillard, and her husband, Derick, stated: “We are neither rejoicing nor disappointed by the sentence, but we are thankful it’s finally over . . .

“Though some believe Josh should have received a greater sentence and still fewer believe he should have received a lighter sentence, God has carried out his vengeance today for his unspeakable criminal activity. Until now, he has yet to be held accountable to the extent necessary to cause change in his dangerous pattern of behavior.”

Duggar and his large Arkansas family starred on TLC’s “19 Kids and Counting” until the network canceled the show in 2015 following revelations that Duggar had molested four of his sisters and a babysitter.

Duggar’s parents said Josh Duggar had confessed to the fondling and apologized. Though authorities investigated the abuse, they concluded that the alleged crimes wee not prosecutable because the statute of limitations had expired.

Federal authorities said they began investigating the latest case after a Little Rock police detective found child porn files were being shared by a computer traced to Duggar. A federal agent testified in May that images depicting the sexual abuse of children, including toddlers, were downloaded in 2019 onto a computer at a car dealership Duggar owned.

Josh Duggar, 34, and his wife, Anna, have seven children together. The couple’s youngest child, Madyson, was born just weeks before the beginning of Josh Duggar’s trial.

A week ago, Duggar’s cousin, Amy King, wrote an open letter to Duggar’s wife Anna on Instagram, telling her “there is no shame in divorcing Josh.”

“No woman wants to be in your shoes,” King wrote. “You’re faced with an impossible decision and you’re being surrounded by the wrong kind of support. . . .

“Josh has chosen how history will remember him. By staying and supporting him you’re allowing him to choose that for you, too. And I know standing up to all of this seems impossible now, but as a Mama, your instinct to protect your kids always has to be stronger than your fear.”

Duggar’s parents, Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar, said after Josh’s conviction in December: “In the days ahead, we will do all we can to surround our daughter-in-law Anna and their children with love and support. As parents, we will never stop praying for Joshua, and loving him, as we do all of our children.” 

Western District of Arkansas Judge Timothy Brooks recommended Josh Duggar serve his sentence in Seagoville federal prison in Texas because it has a “good” program for sex offenders. Brooks also recommended a prison in Texarkana, Arkansas.

Josh Duggar Sentenced to More Than 12 Years for Child Porn

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