Prosecutors seek maximum punishment

Prosecutors are demanding the maximum punishment for Josh Duggar, the former US reality TV star, accused of child pornography.

Josh Duggar continues to claim his innocence, but prosecutors wanted the maximum punishment against him. The former US reality TV star was convicted last December of child pornography charges. Federal prosecutors this week requested a maximum sentence of 20 years behind bars, denouncing his “deep, penetrating, and violent sexual interest in children,” according to the website Oxygen. They have submitted a 30-page document to the Federal Court for the Western District of Arkansas detailing why they believe the 34-year-old should face the harshest possible sentence for downloading “corrupt” child pornography.” “This corruption is evident here. As mentioned above, Duggar researched photos and videos that show prepubescent minors being subjected to sadistic and masochistic abuse.

Josh Duggar was indicted in April 2021 after child pornography was found on his work computer. His lawyers say that someone else downloaded or placed those photos on the device, noting that nothing was found on the accused’s phone or laptop. They demand “a sufficient sentence of 5 years imprisonment, no more,” noting that he “still has a lot to offer the world.” But federal prosecutors during the trial presented jurors with detailed evidence, showing precise activity found on Josh Duggar’s computer, which alternates between sending allegedly personal messages, downloading child pornography and recording photos.

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Already involved in several cases

Josh Duggar is the eldest of the Duggar family, star for years of TLC’s “19 Kids and Counting” reality TV show, which followed the adventures of a particularly conservative Arkansas Baptist family who modeled Christian values. The latter was already at the center of the scandal in 2015 when he was accused of multiple sexual offenses – including forcibly touching five minors. According to TMZ, some of his younger sisters will be among the victims. In particular, he would caress his genitals and the chest of children, some of them while they slept. According to the investigative report, Josh’s father was alerted in March 2002 by one of his victims. At the time, he was only 14 years old. The parents chose not to notify the authorities, preferring to “discipline” their son.

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Silence prevailed until 2006. That year, when the family was scheduled to appear on The Oprah Winfrey Show, an email was sent by an unidentified person to the show’s cast to warn them of the accusations hanging over Josh. Production was transferred to social services, which opened an investigation. The accused’s parents explained to the police that Josh had apologized to his victims and that they had forgiven him. Then he claimed that he turned to God for help. Despite the confessions and testimonies, the police had to drop the charges, after the statute of limitations had passed. These discoveries were only publicly revealed in 2015 by “In Touch” and Josh acknowledged the facts, explaining in a press release to “People” that what he had done was “unforgivable.” “Twelve years ago, as a young teenager, I had an unforgivable situation that I feel very sorry for. I have hurt people, including my family and close friends. I confessed to my parents who took several steps to help me. We spoke to the authorities who admitted my mistakes. ( …) I understood that if I continued to follow this path, I would end up ruining my life,” he said.

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