IE 11 is not supported. For an optimal experience visit our site on another browser.

Josh Duggar found guilty in child sex abuse image trial

Duggar faces up to 20 years on each count of possessing and receiving child sex abuse imagery.
Duck Dynasty's Phil Robertson and The Duggars Speak At CPAC
Former reality TV star Josh Duggar, the oldest child of "19 Kids and Counting," was convicted on two charges related to possessing child sex abuse images.Kris Connor / Getty Images

Josh Duggar, of TLC's "19 Kids and Counting," was convicted Thursday of downloading and possessing child sex abuse images.

Duggar was convicted on two charges: One charge of downloading the material, another charge for possessing it. Duggar's sentence has not yet been announced. He faces up to 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000 for each count.

Josh Duggar's mugshot after being arrested. Washington County Arkansas Jail / AP

“We appreciate the jury’s lengthy deliberations, we respect the jury’s verdict, and we intend to appeal," Duggar's legal team said in a statement to NBC News following the verdict.

In April 2021, Duggar was charged with federal charges of receiving and possessing child sex abuse images, including of children under the age of 12. At the time, Duggar pled not guilty. The trial began last week.

During the trial, defense attorneys for Duggar said that someone else downloaded the images to a computer at Duggar's office. However, prosecutors argued that the computer had a "Linux partition," a form of software downloaded by Duggar that allowed him to circumvent systems to monitor internet usage. Evidence presented during the trial included logs of Duggar's internet usage, which included times where he downloaded the explicit images.

According to NBC affiliate KNWA, Bobye Holt, a friend of the Duggar family, testified that Duggar had confessed to molesting underage girls during a conversation in 2003.

In 2015, an In Touch magazine report revealed that Duggar had been investigated for molesting four of his younger sisters and a family babysitter as a teen. A police report from 2006 showed that Duggar had been investigated when he was 18. He was never charged with a crime or arrested, but released a statement where he said he "acted inexcusably" as a teenager.

Duggar rose to fame as the oldest of 19 children of Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar, the Arkansas family featured in the TLC reality show "19 Kids and Counting." That show was canceled shortly after the allegations came to light. Another show featuring the Duggar family, "Counting On," was canceled in June 2021 after the charges against Duggar were filed.

In 2015, Duggar confessed to a pornography addiction after it was revealed that he had frequently used Ashley Madison, a website for extramarital affairs, and cheated on wife Anna. Duggar said that he was "ashamed" and had been living a "double life," and checked himself into a rehabilitation center.

The Duggar family in 2014. Josh is second from left in the back row. D. Dipasupil / Getty Images for Extra

Since then, he and his wife have had three more children, including one daughter born in Nov. 2021 just before the trial began. Duggar is the father of seven children in total.

Duggar's parents, Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar, released a statement following the verdict on Thursday night.

"This entire ordeal has been very grievous. Today, God’s grace, through the love and prayers of so many, has sustained us. Our hearts and prayers are with anyone who has ever been harmed through CSAM (child sex abuse materials)," they said. "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. In each of life’s circumstances, we place our trust in God. He is our source of strength and refuge. Thank you for your prayers."

On Thursday, Amy Duggar King, a cousin of the family who was portrayed as a "bad girl" during the original TLC series, shared a statement on Twitter shortly after the verdict was announced.

"May the juror’s and Judge Brooks seek healing / counseling from all that was exposed to them," wrote King, who has spoken to TODAY in the past about the charges against Duggar.

"May the children grow up with real Godly men as father figures who will guide and protect them," King continued. "May the people who were once in disbelief have their eyes opened for the first time."\

On Wednesday, before the verdict was announced, Derick Dillard, husband of Jill Duggar Dillard, wrote on Twitter that he was "praying for justice" in the trial.

In recent years, Jill Duggar Dillard has been open about the distance she keeps from her family.

“We’re not on the best terms with some of my family,” she revealed in 2020. “We’ve had some disagreements and stuff, but we’re working towards healing definitely and restoration, but we’re having to kind of just take some time and heal and just doing what’s best for our family right now and just working through it, I guess.”

Derick Dillard has slammed TLC for their handling of the molestation scandal. "The public was deceived... we were told to keep filming and keep our mouths shut."

Related video: