Following his arrest, the family of former 19 Kids and Counting star Josh Duggar is speaking out.
Federal agents arrested Josh on April 29 in his home state of Arkansas. According to the indictment obtained by E! News, the grand jury charged Josh with receipt of child pornography and possession of child pornography in 2019. He pleaded not guilty. Per a press release from the Department of Justice, Josh faces up to 20 years of imprisonment and fines up to $250,000.00 on each count.
Josh's wife Anna Duggar just announced she is pregnant with the couple's seventh child earlier this month. Neither she nor Josh have commented on the arrest, however, his attorney released a statement to E! News, stating, "In this country, no one can stop prosecutors from charging a crime. But when you're accused, you can fight back in the courtroom—and that is exactly what Josh intends to do."
Since Josh's arrest, many family members have spoken out about the serious legal issue.
Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar, Josh's parents, said in a statement to E! News of the arrest, "We appreciate your continued prayers for our family at this time. The accusations brought against Joshua today are very serious. It is our prayer that the truth, no matter what it is, will come to light, and that this will all be resolved in a timely manner. We love Josh and Anna and continue to pray for their family."
Jinger Duggar wrote on Instagram, "We are disturbed to hear of the charges against Josh. While the case must go through the legal system, we want to make it clear that we absolutely condemn any form of child abuse and fully support the authorities and judicial process in their pursuit of justice."
In a statement to E! News, Jill Duggar Dillard, Josh's sister, and her husband Derick Dillard, said on April 29, "We just found out this information yesterday. It is very sad."
Josh has faced serious legal issues before. In 2015, an expunged police report from 2006 resurfaced, which stated that Josh, 33, had previously been accused of molesting five underage girls when he was a teenager. The victims included four of his sisters. Following the unearthing of the report, the Duggar family's TLC reality series 19 Kids and Counting was cancelled.
Jim Bob and Michelle said in a statement at the time, "When Josh was a young teenager, he made some very bad mistakes, and we were shocked. We had tried to teach him right from wrong. That dark and difficult time caused us to seek God like never before. Even though we would never choose to go through something so terrible, each one of our family members drew closer to God."
That same year, the internet uncovered Josh's account on Ashley Madison, a site for people to find extramarital relationships. In a since-edited statement on the Duggar family blog, he wrote, "I have been the biggest hypocrite ever. While espousing faith and family values, I have secretly over the last several years been viewing pornography on the internet and this became a secret addiction and I became unfaithful to my wife."