The agent said images allegedly found on Josh Duggar's computer were "in the top five of the worst of the worst that I've ever had to examine."

By Greg Hanlon and Ally Mauch
May 05, 2021 at 06:36 PM EDT
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josh duggar
Josh Duggar
| Credit: Danny Johnston/AP/Shutterstock

A homeland security agent detailed disturbing allegations in the federal investigation into Josh Duggar during a virtual detention hearing for the former 19 Kids and Counting star.

Homeland Security Investigations Special Agent Gerald Faulkner, testifying for the prosecution, alleged Duggar downloaded computer files depicting child sex abuse on May 14, 15 and 16 of 2019.

The files were initially flagged by a police detective in Little Rock, Ark., and then allegedly traced to Duggar's IP address on a computer at his workplace at the time, the Wholesale Motorcars dealership.

One file, according to Faulkner, depicted child sex abuse involving children ranging from 18 months to 12 years of age. Faulkner described the images as "in the top five of the worst of the worst that I've ever had to examine."

According to Faulkner, when homeland security officials raided Duggar's car dealership and asked to speak with him, without informing him they were investigating child pornography, Duggar "spontaneously" responded, "What is this about? Has someone been downloading child pornography?"

Faulkner alleged that when Duggar was asked point blank about seeing or having child sex abuse material in his possession, he said, "I'd rather not answer that question."

Faulkner also said Duggar had a program on his computer called "Covenant Eyes," which the agent described as "accountability software" that monitors and reports objectionable internet use to a partner and is meant to help people with porn addictions. According to Faulkner, the program was registered to Duggar and would send reports to his wife, Anna.  

anna duggar, josh duggar
Josh and Anna Duggar
| Credit: Anna Duggar/Instagram

But according to Faulkner, Covenant Eyes was unable to detect Duggar's internet usage on the password-protected network he used.

Duggar was arrested on April 29, and the hearing, which was ongoing as of Tuesday afternoon, will determine whether or not he will be able to leave the Arkansas detention center where he's being held.

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During Duggar's arraignment last week, it was ruled that he would not be allowed to live with minors if released on bail.

Duggar, 33, was arrested last week on one count of receipt of child pornography and one count of possession of child pornography. He pled not guilty the following day in court.

RELATED VIDEO: Jinger Duggar Recalls the Moment Brother Josh's Past Molestation Scandal Was Made Public in 2015

On Tuesday, Duggar requested that the court "release him on bail subject to a combination of conditions of release that will reasonably assure his appearance at trial and the safety of the community or any other person," according to a bond motion obtained by PEOPLE.

He argued in the motion that he is demonstrably not a flight risk, citing that he has known about his federal investigation since November and that he has no previous criminal convictions.

josh duggar
Josh Duggar
| Credit: Kris Connor/Getty

The motion further argued that because Duggar is a public figure, it is unreasonable to view him as a flight risk: "Duggar has a widely-recognizable face and has spent the majority of his life in the public spotlight—making any concern that he is a risk of flight all the more unwarranted."

In May 2015, he apologized for his "wrongdoing" following the release of a 2006 police report that revealed that he had been investigated as a teen for inappropriately touching five underage girls. His sisters Jill, 29, and Jessa, 28, subsequently stepped forward as two of the victims.

If convicted of the current charges against him, Duggar could face up to 40 years in prison.

If you or someone you know has been a victim of sexual abuse, text "STRENGTH" to the Crisis Text Line at 741-741 to be connected to a certified crisis counselor.

If you or someone you know has been sexually assaulted, please contact the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673) or go to rainn.org.

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This story originally appeared on people.com

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