A stuffy, overcrowded cell. At times, two or three men to a single bunk. Lockdown for 23 out of 24 hours.
Is this what awaits South Africa's Oscar Pistorius if he is not released on bail while he awaits trial for the murder of his girlfriend?
Some of South Africa's prisons are better than others.
But whichever one might house Pistorius, there's no question that conditions would be a far cry from those in his $560,000 home in the luxury Silverwoods Estate, on the outskirts of Pretoria.
South African prisons are frequently overcrowded, putting a strain on sanitation, ventilation and medical care, according to Nooshin Erfani-Ghadimi, project coordinator for the Johannesburg-based Wits Justice Project , a civil society group.
The overcrowding means three men may share a single cell, or communal cells for 40 people are jammed with double the number they were intended to hold, with men sleeping in double or triple bunks, she said.
"We heard of one person who for the first year in remand detention slept on the floor and then 'graduated' to a bunk," she said. Remand is the term used for pretrial custody.
Many inmates are kept locked up for 23 hours a day, with only an hour outside their cell. Some prisons go into lockdown as early as 3 or 4 p.m., leaving prisoners cooped up for 12 hours or more at a stretch.
"It's not a pretty picture," Erfani-Ghadimi said.
Overcrowding is a particular problem in remand prisons, where it runs at just over 200%, she said, citing figures from the Department of Correctional Services. Overall, overcrowding in prisons stands at about 133%.
And Pretoria Central Prison, perhaps the most likely destination for Pistorius if he doesn't get bail, "doesn't have a very good reputation," Erfani-Ghadimi said.
The track star's high-profile case is likely to thrust South Africa's criminal justice system under the spotlight.
Questions have already been asked about why Pistorius, a gold medal-winning Paralympian, is being detained in a holding cell at the Brooklyn Police Station -- and not at Central Prison or Newlock, where other defendants awaiting trial are kept.
"If there is some special circumstance that permits this, authorities must share this with the public as they are setting a bad precedent," the women's branch of South Africa's ruling party said in a prepared statement. "All should be treated equally before the law no matter your standing in society."
Pistorius is getting special treatment, the African National Congress Women's League said, adding that his family can visit him outside visiting hours -- unlike relatives of other inmates.
"If Pistorius is denied bail, he must be moved to a proper prison facility with others accused of similar crimes," the statement said. "A strong message must be sent out that wealth and celebrity cannot give you an advantage over the law."
The 26-year-old has rejected the murder allegation "in the strongest terms," his agent said in a statement.
Pistorius' lawyers requested Brooklyn last week so that they could have access to their client over the weekend, following his arrest Thursday. The state did not object.
The case of Shrien Dewani, a British man accused of hiring hitmen to kill his wife on their South African honeymoon, cast the country's criminal justice system in an unflattering light. His lawyers argued last year that his extradition would breach his human rights under European law because he risked being attacked by other inmates in South African prisons.
While British High Court judges dismissed that part of Dewani's argument, concerns about potential torture and abuse in detention are warranted, Erfani-Ghadimi said.
South Africa is a signatory to the U.N. Convention on Torture, but it has yet to ratify it, so such abuses have not been criminalized.
"A legacy of apartheid is that prison cells are still unfortunately a place where prisoners can be abused," Erfani-Ghadimi said.
Amnesty International's Annual Report 2012, which looked at human rights around the world, also said that a draft law to make torture a criminal offense had not been presented in South Africa's parliament by the end of the year.