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Laurie Holt goes to Washington, D.C. to help get son released

The fight continues for one Utah family.

Joshua Holt, who has ties to Pocatello, is still sitting in a Venezuelan jail.

It’s been nearly one year since Joshua Holt and his wife Thamy Holt were arrested and accused of being U.S. spies.

They have been in jail in Venezuela ever since, still awaiting their day in court.

“I’ve been living a nightmare, literally a nighmare, for almost a year now,” said Laurie Holt, Josh’s mother.

His family has been working non-stop to help get him released. His mom, Laurie Holt, just returned from a trip to Washington, D.C. where she approached state and national leaders for their help.

“I honestly cannot tell you how many senators or congressmen that I met while we were there and all of them had been aware of Joshua’s case,” she said. “All of them are giving me 100 percent support.”

Laurie Holt met with Utah Congresswoman Mia Love, Utah Senator Orrin Hatch, the state department, and the Deputy National Security Advisor, K.T. McFarland. She also met with the Venezuelan embassy, who Laurie Holt said did not talk much.

“You’re talking to somebody who’s holding your son captive and so my plea to him was very emotional,” Laurie Holt said. “I just basically pleaded for Joshua, for our family, for this nightmare to be over.”

Laurie Holt said Joshua’s health is okay, but he’s still struggling. He has lost 60 pounds and is battling depression. Laurie Holt said he is denied any acitivities that other prisoners are allowed, such as going to the gym. His wife, Thamy Holt, is still stuffering from a torn rotator cuff, which she was previously denied medical treatment for.

Laurie Holt said another recent development is that the family hired new lawyers in March. She said she feels they have made great progress with the new lawyers.

“We have a lot of different things going on,” she said. “A lot of different people trying to help us get him out. And one of these days, I feel very, very soon – it’s going to happen.”

The U.S. Embassy in Venezuela was granted permission to finally see Josh again on Tuesday. However, there still is no court date scheduled for Josh or Thamy yet.

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