Josh Duggar sentenced to federal prison in a child sex abuse images case

Josh Duggar, former star of TLC's "19 Kids and Counting," was sentenced to more than 12 years in prison on federal charges of downloading and possessing child sex abuse images.

"While this is not the sentence we asked for, this is a lengthy sentence," U.S. Attorney David Clay Fowlkes said Wednesday, according to the Associated Press.

Prosecutors had called for the Fayetteville, Arkansas, judge to sentence Duggar to 20 years in prison because he had a "deep-seated, pervasive and violent sexual interest in children," reported the AP.

Duggar's legal team requested a five-year sentence. They said he would appeal the court's decision.

In April 2021, the 34-year-old reality star and father of seven was arrested for downloading photos and videos portraying the sexual abuse of children, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.

Duggar pleaded not guilty to the charges.

In December, Duggar was convicted of "receipt and possession of child pornography," carrying a possible sentence of five to 20 years of imprisonment.

After his conviction, Duggar's parents Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar, who, along with their 19 children, starred in the television series from 2008 to 2015, released a statement about the "grievous ordeal."

The conservative Christian couple vowed to "surround our daughter-in-law Anna and their children with love and support." Josh and Anna wed in September 2008.

Michelle and Jim Bob Duggar added, "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."