Eleven years in prison for Elizabeth Holmes, “the new Steve Jobs” who misled Silicon Valley

The entrepreneur and one-time Silicon Valley star Elizabeth Holmes was sentenced on Friday 11 years and three months in prison for defrauding the investors of his company, Theranos, by ensuring that he had developed a revolutionary blood analysis system.

The Judge Edward Davila He also placed Holmes on three years’ probation, once released from prison, and a $400 fine.

The entrepreneur will also have to pay a series of fees that will be determined in the future.

Holmes was found guilty of four counts of fraud against Theranos investors last January and faced charges possibility of a maximum sentence of 20 years imprisonment and a $250,000 fine.

Before the verdict was read, in a court in San Jose, California, Holmes claimed he loved Theranos.

“It was my life’s work”she said, crying, acknowledging that she is “devastated” by her failures at the helm of the company.

The woman also apologized to Theranos employees, investors and customers: “I’m so sorry. I gave it my all, I had to set up and save the company”complain.

In pre-ruling arguments, Holmes’ lawyer, Kevin Downey, noted that, unlike other defendants in corporate fraud cases, his client showed no greed by spending the money she earned on “yachts and planes.”

Instead of, used the funds “to create medical technology”Downey said.

For his part, he fiscal federal Jeffrey Schenk be aware that Holmes achieved fame, admiration and a lifestyle thanks to the frauds he committeddespite the fact that he has not achieved any financial gain.

“These are still benefits”he remembered.

RISE AND FALL

Holmes, 38 years old, created Theranos in 2003 when he was 19 and He left his studies at Stanford University to devote himself full-time to the business.

The young woman became famous for claiming that her company invented a revolutionary technology to perform reliable and accurate blood tests for various diseases with just a few drops from the fingertips, which reduced costs.

This made her a star in Silicon Valley and in the business world at large, to the point that she was compared to the co-founder of Apple. Steve Jobs.

Theranos quickly attracted investor interest due to the great potential of these purported blood tests and turned its founder into a multimillionaire at the age of 31.

However, the daily The Wall Street Journal published at the end of 2015 a series of investigative articles questioning the credibility of Theranos’ tests and accusing the company of, among other things, diluting patients’ blood samples to increase their volume.

These allegations led the US Justice Department to file charges against Holmes and the company’s former president and former COO. Ramseh “Sunny” Balwani (Holmes’ former sentimental partner), whom he accused of misleading investors, doctors and patients.

Company Theranos disbanded in September 2018.

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