From heroine to villain
Technical fraudster Holmes sentenced to 11 years in prison
Elizabeth Holmes wanted to change medicine. But the tech founder fooled everyone. Now he has to go to prison for about eleven years for fraud.
Elizabeth Holmes was sentenced to 11 years in prison.
Former American blood test entrepreneur Elizabeth Holmes, 38 – once a celebrated young star of the biotech industry – has been sentenced to around eleven years in prison for fraud.
A federal judge in San Jose, Calif., announced the sentencing of the founder of startup Theranos on Friday. The pregnant 38-year-old woman does not have to go to prison until April 27 next year.
Guilty of four counts of fraud
Holmes was found guilty by a jury in January of four counts of investor fraud. The public prosecutor subsequently demanded 15 years in prison.
The defense argued that Holmes should be spared or sentenced to no more than one and a half years in prison. Federal Judge Edward Davila now handed down a sentence of 135 months, or 11 years and three months in prison.
Billionaires, then everything blows up
Holmes founded Theranos in 2003 when he was just 19 years old. The company advertised a supposedly revolutionary technology for particularly fast, efficient and inexpensive blood tests.
The charismatic young entrepreneur was hailed as a technology pioneer and won financially powerful investors and prominent backers such as former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger and media mogul Rupert Murdoch.
Holmes herself became a billionaire. Then the Wall Street Journal reports revealed that the technology didn’t work at all.
Blame the ex-boyfriend
Holmes has always denied defrauding investors. It admitted mistakes but said it believed in the potential of its technology. She also blamed her ex-boyfriend and former business partner Ramesh “Sunny” Balwani for the scandal. He was also found guilty of fraud in July. The sentence is still pending. (AFP)