Wayne Montgomery is a surfer living in Lima Peru in 1980. He gets framed on phony drug charges and thrown into Lima's infamous El Sexto prison along with communist dissidents. The American consul won't believe him and along with corrupt cop Lt. Gutierrez, expect him to call his wealthy parents in California to pay for his release. Wayne refuses. In prison, Wayne befriends Jorge, a pacifistic Hare Krishna, and teaches him to wrestle to defend himself from "Nicaragua", a sadistic bully. Gutierrez takes Wayne to the beach and tortures him until he takes him to his hidden money, 186 dollars. When Jorge defeats "Nicaragua" in wrestling, the bully exacts the ultimate revenge. Wayne pummels "Nicaragua", gets beaten and dragged by guards to the prison basement while the communists start a riot. In a cell with a delusional prisoner who thinks he is Jesus Christ Wayne meets Gutierrez for the final confrontation to determine if he will live or die.