Josh Duggar pleads not guilty after shocking Arkansas arrest

Josh Duggar is the eldest child of 19 Kids and Counting stars Jim Bob and Michelle

Josh Duggar, the eldest child of 19 Kids and Counting stars Jim Bob and Michelle, has pleaded not guilty after his arrest on Thursday 29 April.

Josh, 33, was seen on a Zoom call on Friday from the Washington County detention center along with his lawyers.

After a 2019 raid on his Arkansas car dealership, the father-of-six willingly turned himself in on 29 April 2021.

On Friday it was confirmed through court documents that he had “knowingly received child pornography" and "knowingly possessed material that contained images of child pornography,” including “images of minors under the age of 12" in May 2019.

MORE: Jed Duggar, 22, marries Katey Nakatsu in crowded Arkansas ceremony

Josh turned himself in on 29 April

The judge shared that a jury trial will start 6 July, and that "given the nature of the charges against him, he will need a third party custodian."

If he is granted bail, he will not be allowed to be around minors while he awaits trial.

"It would need to be a residence where there are no minors in the home. You would need to look for somebody who could ensure to the court that there are no minors in the home or would be visiting unsupervised," the judge added.

His wife Anna is pregnant with their seventh child; they are parents to  Mackynzie, 11, Michael, 9, Marcus, 7, Meredith, 5, Mason, 3, and Maryella, 17 months.

Josh is a father of six

"He has pled not guilty to both charges and we intend to defend this case aggressively and thoroughly," Josh's attorneys, Justin Gelfand, Travis W. Story and Greg Payne, said in a statement.

"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," his legal team said.

In November 2019, Homeland Security raided the 14000-block of Wildcat Creek Road as part of an “ongoing federal investigation".

The lot is now abandoned, and it was never revealed what the agents were searching for.

If convicted, Josh could receive 20 years in prison with fines up to $250,000 on each count.

He married Anna in 2008

The charges come six years after it emerged that between 2002 and 2003, when Josh was a teenager, he allegedly molested young girls including several of his sisters.

Jill and Jessa came forward and claimed to be victims; no charges were ever filed.

In 2015, Josh was reported to have been using adultery dating service Ashley Madison after its records were hacked, and porn star Danica Dillon also alleged he had assaulted her during a sexual encounter.

MORE: Everything you need to know about the Duggar family weddings

MORE: Jill Duggar spends time with sister Jessa amid family estrangement

"I have been the biggest hypocrite ever," Josh said in a statement at the time.

"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."

He continued: “I brought hurt and a reproach to my family, close friends and the fans of our show with my actions that happened when I was 14-15 years old, and now I have re-broken their trust."

The pair are expecting their seventh child

The TLC show was canceled as a result, alhough the network later produced Counting On, a spin-off which focused on Jessa and Jill.

According to The Sun US, Jim Bob had reportedly told his children on Thursday that the charges against Josh were coming, and asked them not to speak publicly.

Devout independent Christian Baptists who pride themselves on their conservative outlook, Jim Bob and Michelle are parents to 19 children, and all of their children have names which begin with the letter J; Joshua, Jana, John-David, Jill, Jessa, Jinger, Joseph, Josiah, Joy-Anna, Jedidiah, Jeremiah, Jason, James, Justin, Jackson, Johannah, Jennifer, Jordyn-Grace and Josie.

Jim Bob and Michelle sent Josh to a Christian program when he confessed to molesting young girls as a teeanager

Jim Bob and Michelle's eldest son Josh wed Anna Keller in 2008 in front of around 300 people, and they now have six children; they sadly suffered a miscarriage in 2010.

"The joys we’ve experienced together have far surpassed the shadows of sorrow we’ve walked through," Anna shared in 2019.

"Through it all, God’s kindness and grace has sustained us."

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