Sam LaHood: 'Thrilled' to be home after detention in Egypt

Egyptian authorities accused the NGO employees of not registering their organizations with the government or disclosing their receipt of foreign funding. They were barred from leaving the country, during which time LaHood and the other Americans took refuge in the U.S. embassy.

Although the Americans were allowed to leave the country last week, fourteen Egyptians still face prosecution, reported The Washington Post on Tuesday.

"We are also just very concerned about our Egyptian colleagues who remain on trial in Egypt and we're hopeful this will be resolved for them as well," LaHood said.

LaHood, director of the Washington-based International Republican Institute’s (IRI) Egyptian program, had been working in Egypt for about a year and a half on efforts to promote democracy.

He told CNN that his attorney used the term "hostage" to describe his being blocked from leaving the country and threatened with charges.

"It was a de facto detention in the sense that we were prevented from being able to leave the country of Egypt," LaHood said.

When asked if he would return to Egypt to face charges, LaHood said he is working with his lawyers to determine the next steps for himself and his other American colleagues. He said they are hopeful for a positive outcome or that the cases against him and the other NGO employees will be dismissed all together.

Given his experience working in places like Egypt that are transitioning to democracy, LaHood said there are often "bumps in the road."

"In our case what we're seeing here is ... former elements of the Mubarak government that are pushing their own agenda that we think is inconsistent with the transition that is going on in Egypt right now," he said.

This story was updated at 1:05 p.m.