Utah native Joshua Holt, who was freed last month from a Venezuelan prison after nearly two years held without trial, said in a "Today" interview Tuesday that the experience still haunts him.
Holt, a 26-year-old Mormon missionary, was jailed at El Helicoide, or The Helix, a prison in Caracas criticized for its human rights abuses.
He said cockroaches crawled over him inside his tiny cell, which was about the size of a twin-sized bed, and a plastic bag was used to cover the door. He sat in his underwear, barely about to breathe.
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"They never took me out to go to the bathroom," Holt added. "If you had to use the bathroom, you either had a bottle or a newspaper."
Holt was in the country to marry Thamara Candelo, a Venezuelan woman he met online, when anti-gang police accused the couple of stockpiling assault rifles and grenades in her family home.
The State Department later called the weapons charges "questionable."