Tonight on AC360: American fighting a 22-year prison sentence in Nicaragua
August 20th, 2012
09:04 PM ET

Tonight on AC360: American fighting a 22-year prison sentence in Nicaragua

Jason Puracal, a 35-year old native of Washington state, is seeking freedom from one of the world's most dangerous prisons, La Modelo in Nicaragua. He’s been held there on drug charges for 18-months and wants to avoid a 22-year prison sentence.

According to Puracal’s family, Nicaraguan police arrested him in November 2010 accusing him of using his real estate business to launder money as a front for an international drug trafficking ring. His lawyers say Nicaraguan authorities had no evidence linking him to the other 10 accused traffickers. Still, Puracal was sentenced to 22 years in prison. His appeal hearing took place today. CNN has tried to contact Nicaraguan authorities multiple times over the past few months. We have been promised a comment, but so far have not been given any answers on the case. Puracal's health had been deteriorating under the harsh conditions of the prison. His family members have visited him, and today his sisters attended the hearing. One of his sister’s told CNN today, “He’s been struggling for two years now in that prison for really no reason whatsoever. It's still difficult to see him."

Tonight in Miguel Marquez's report you'll see how Jason is doing now and hear him address the court today as he fights for freedom. You’ll also hear more from his family. The report airs at 8 and 10 p.m. ET.

Watch Anderson's last interview with Jason from jail below.

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Filed under: Crime & Punishment • Jason Puracal
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