Theranos Founder Guilty in Massive Wire Fraud Scheme

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Elizabeth Holmes, the founder of the blood-technology start-up, Theranos Inc., who fashioned herself as a medical revolutionary, has been found guilty by a federal jury of eight counts of wire fraud and conspiracy in the failed start-up.

 

After deliberating seven full days the jury, comprised of eight men and four women, sent word to United State District Court Judge Edward Davila, that they deadlocked on three counts in the indictment and were unable to come to a unanimous verdict.


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The demise of the once darling of Silicon Valley, Holmes, 37, who personified former Apple founder Steve Jobs, began with a Wall Street Journal investigative piece on the inaccuracies of the Edison, the proprietary technology created by Holmes which she claimed would revolutionize the process of venipuncture, drawing blood, and could perform hundreds of tests on a single, finger prick, blood drop.

"The charges include two counts of conspiracy to commit wire fraud, six counts of wire fraud related to investors who sank hundreds of millions of dollars into the company and three counts of wire fraud related to patients who said they received inaccurate blood test results, " reported The Wall Street Journal.

Holmes has been found guilty of lying to investors and accepting wire transfer with full knowledge that the statements she made to secure the funds were fabricated to maintain the bubble fantasy which had become her life. She chose to continue present fraudulent claims and collecting funds.


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Birthed in Silicon Valley, the technology and start-up think tank capital where young visionaries arrive with possible world changing ideas, personifying the savvy of Silicon Valley idols, recreating themselves with the expertise of the slickest PR firm and suddenly, truthful, or not, they are the whole package.

Pulling in millions from wealthy investors, and Venture Capital firms, Theranos and Elizabeth Holmes, along with Theranos Chief Operating Officer and former President Ramesh "Sunny" Balwani, 56, did just that.

 

Holmes has been found guilty of lying to investors and accepting wire transfers with full knowledge that the statements she made to secure the funds were fabricated to maintain the bubble fantasy which had become her life. She chose to continue to present fraudulent claims and collect funds.

 

At its height, Theranos Board of Director seats were coveted with a virtual who's who of business, industry, politics and medical experts, including former Center for Disease Control Director, William Foege, former CEO for Wells Fargo Richard Kovacevich and former U.S. Secretary of Defense William Perry.

"The start-up raised roughly $900 million from a star-studded list of investors including Oracle co-founder Larry Ellison, media moguls Rupert Murdoch and the Cox family, and the family of former education secretary Betsy DeVos. Holmes even attracted big-name statesmen such as Henry Kissinger and Jim Mattis to her board of directors," reported The Washington Post.


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Holmes who had been the subject of a 60minutes segment, featured on Forbes and other high profile and influencing magazines and media programs, was once known as the first self-made billionaire of Silicon Valley and the first female to be convicted of a white-collar crime.

While each count carries a maximum of 20 years in federal prison, it's possible the sentencing process will take six week or longer before Ms. Holmes will be sentenced. to be hammered out between the parties. The sentencing recommendation will be presented in 45 days after which there will be any number of judicial wrangling which will be presented to allow Ms. Holmes the least amount of prison time possible, including even agreeing to cooperate with federal prosecutors in any other cases related to the remainder of the cases involving the fraud propagated by Theranos, Inc., and its key leadership.

The trial of Sunny Balwani is expected to begin in February 2022.

The continual prosecution of high-profile cases, across all veins, is a long overdue reckoning of the former dual system of justice so long held as a perk to the ultra-wealthy, powerful and professional elite.


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