Folks, it gives us great pleasure to report this:
Josh Duggar is almost certainly going to prison for a very long time.
That might sound like an obvious statement, but as recently as last week, Josh's fate was in question, thanks to some slippery moves from his lawyers.
Now, however, the walls are closing in, as Josh suffers one legal setback after another.
To their credit, his attorneys made some bold moves in recent weeks.
Thankfully, the judge recognized them for what they were and rebuffed these attempts to tip the scales in Josh's favor.
In one motion, the defense argued that investigators threw out evidence that might have absolved Josh.
Specifically, they argued that agents from the Department of Homeland Security inspected three cellphones belonging to Josh's co-workers, and returned the phones after concluding that they did not contain anything incriminating.
The defense argues that by returning the phones and failing to properly document everything that was found on them, prosecutors allowed potentially exculpatory evidence to be destroyed.
"Put simply, the government cannot preserve what it does not have -- in this case, forensic images of various cell phones belonging to individuals who were not present on the car lot during the relevant time frame -- and the government had no obligation to take investigative steps based on what the defendant might want at some later date," the DA argued.
The judge ruled in the prosecution's favor and determined that the handling of the cell phones was not so egregious as to justify dismissing the charges against Josh.
(Yes, the prosecution really tried to have the case thrown out because investigators didn't keep cellphones belonging to Josh's employees. Like we said, bold!)
Of course, that wasn't the defense's only ridiculous attempt to get the case thrown out on a ridiculous technicality.
Josh's lawyers also claimed that the charges should be dismissed due to the fact that the two acting secretaries of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security at the time of the Duggar investigation weren't properly appointed under the designated order of succession.
Thankfully, the judge recognized this for the desperate nonsense that it is.
"The defendant's assumption that any violation of the Appointments Clause in regard to [Department of Homeland Security] warrants dismissal of this case fails to appreciate the fact that this indictment was brought by a grand jury and signed by Assistant United States Attorneys of the United States Attorney's Office for the Western District of Arkansas and a Trial Attorney of the Criminal Division of the Department of Justice," prosecutors successfully argued.
This week brought yet another attempt by Josh's lawyers to secure his freedom despite the fact that he's clearly guilty.
The defense claimed that photos of Josh's hands that were taken after he was arrested constituted a violation of his rights.
According to legal documents obtained by UK tabloid The Sun, documents describe the photos as depicting a “scar on the defendant’s hand, which is plainly visible.”
Investigators obeserved the same scar “in images recovered from the defendant’s electronic devices seized pursuant to a search warrant in this cast.”
Upon learning of this incriminating image, Josh's lawyers suddenly became very concerned about the possibility that these hand photos made Josh uncomfortable.
"What is particularly egregious about [Homeland Security's] conduct in this capacity is that Duggar's body parts were manipulated and he was required to pose for the photographs," their motion states.
"By any measure, this constitutes a search and an 'intrusion on [his] personal rights'—all without his counsel present—in violation of his Fourth, Fifth, and Sixth Amendment rights."
Fortunately, the judge determined that "the display of a defendant's physical characteristics," such as a photograph, do not fall under the Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination.
And so, the images will be admissible as evidence when Josh's trial begins on November 30.
Of course, that's six weeks away, which means the defense will attempt to have the case thrown out several times before then.
Here's hoping the judge will continue to see through their BS.