American jailed in Venezuela for 2 years now on his way home

Senator Orrin Hatch praised the President profusely for his role in helping bring Venezuelan prisoner Josh Holt home to the US

Senator Orrin Hatch praised the President profusely for his role in helping bring Venezuelan prisoner Josh Holt home to the US

Venezuela released a Utah man Saturday who spent almost two years jailed by the leftist regime of President Nicolas Maduro after secret negotiations by Sen.

Utah man Joshua Holt and his wife Thamy have been in a Venezuelan prison since 2016 after being arrested for firearm offences. Bob Corker, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and close allies of Maduro.

"The great people of Utah will be very happy", Trump wrote.

Hatch has been a devout supporter of Trump since he came into office
Hatch has been a devout supporter of Trump since he came into office

Venezuelan authorities arrested Holt in June 2016 while he was in Venezuela for his wedding, and he was held without trial at the headquarters of intelligence agency Sebin, a Caracas complex known as the Helicoide.

Holt's release looked unlikely a week ago, when he appeared in a clandestinely shot video railing against the Maduro government and saying his life was threatened in a prison riot.

The U.S. government at first avoided ratcheting up public pressure on Venezuela amid already strained relations between the two countries, but eventually raised Holt's case to the highest levels of the Venezuela government.

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In a statement on Facebook, Holt's family gave thanks "to all who participated in this miracle", but asked to be allowed to meet him and his wife before giving any further statements or interviews.

There has not been any official confirmation or comment from President Nicolás Maduro's government.

The video, posted on the Twitter account for Hatch's office, depicts Holt and his wife, Thamy, reuniting with family in the senator's Washington, D.C., office, with the caption "Reunited".

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In their statement, the Holt family said, "We thank you for your collaboration during this time of anguish".

Holt will be returning to the United States with his wife, Thamara Caleño. Orrin Hatch announced Saturday morning.

The news of their release comes just days after Venezuela's presidential election. "Senator Hatch has worked tirelessly on the Holt family's behalf, and I was honored to play a small role in bringing Josh and his wife home to the United States".

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On May 17, Holt issued a plea on Facebook, asking the U.S. government to help him return home.

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