Josh Duggar‘s siblings and parents are speaking out after the former reality TV star, who appeared with his family on TLC’s “19 Kids and Counting,” was found guilty Thursday of downloading and possessing child pornography.
Jill Duggar and her husband Derick Dillard issued a joint statement on their family’s blog on Thursday after a jury in Fayetteville, Arkansas, found 33-year-old Duggar guilty on one count each of receiving and possessing child pornography.
“Today was difficult for our family. Our hearts go out to the victims of child abuse or any kind of exploitation,” the statement read. “We are thankful for the hard work of law enforcement.”
Josh Duggar faces up to 20 years in prison and fines of up to $250,000 for each count when he’s sentenced at a later date.
“Nobody is above the law. It applies equally to everybody, no matter your wealth, status, associations, gender, race, or any other factor. Today, the people of the Western District of Arkansas made that clear in their verdict,” the statement added.
Josh Duggar verdict: Former reality TV star found guilty of receiving and possessing child pornography
The joint statement continued to say they attended the trial to see the evidence for themselves and that they believe the jury’s verdict coincided with the truth “beyond a reasonable doubt.”
More:Jill Duggar of ‘Counting On’ reveals she’s ‘not on the best terms’ with some of her family
Josh Duggar’s parents, Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar, also broke their silence on their son’s conviction in a joint statement posted on their website Thursday calling the situation “very grievous.”
Josh Duggar convicted:Everything that happened during the trial
“Today, God’s grace, through the love and prayers of so many, has sustained us,” the statement read. “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.”
Duggar’s trial began as his father, Jim Bob Duggar, announced he would be running in a special election for a vacant state Senate seat in northwest Arkansas. It also arrived just weeks after Anna Duggar gave birth to the couple’s seventh child together.
Josh Duggar’s sister Jinger Duggar Vuolo spoke about the conviction in a Friday Instagram post.
“We are thankful to God for exposing Josh’s actions and to a legal system committed to protecting the innocent and punishing the guilty in this case. We are grateful for justice,” she wrote.
Jim Bob Duggar runs for senate:’19 Kids and Counting’ star announces candidacy
Jill Duggar Dillard appeared on “19 Kids and Counting” with her brother Josh from 2008 to 2014 before the show’s cancellation the following year and later on the spin-off “Counting On” from 2015 to 2017. In October 2020 she opened up about distancing herself from some of her family members, without being specific on which members, in a YouTube video after not being “on the best terms.”
TLC canceled “19 Kids and Counting” in 2015 following a sexual abuse scandal involving revelations that he had molested four of his sisters and a babysitter when he was a young teen. At that time, he admitted to a porn addiction and cheating on his wife, and apologized.
Over the objections of Duggar’s defense team, the judge in the child porn case ruled that jurors could hear testimony about how in 2003, Duggar admitted to molesting the girls. A family friend also testified that Duggar told her about the abuse.
‘This too shall pass away’ this famous Persian adage seems to be defeating us again and again in the case of COVID-19. Despite every effort