Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes’ trial set for summer 2020

Posted at 3:41 PM, Jun 28, 2019
and last updated 2019-06-28 17:41:50-04

Elizabeth Holmes, founder of failed blood-testing startup Theranos, will go to trial August 4, 2020, a federal judge ruled Friday in San Jose, California.

The court will begin hearing evidence that day with jury selection beginning the week prior on July 28.

Holmes was indicted on federal wire fraud charges in June 2018 and stepped down from the company minutes before the charges were made public.

She and former Theranos COO and president Ramesh “Sunny” Balwani allegedly engaged in schemes to defraud investors, doctors and patients, according to a release from the US Attorney’s office at the time.

Holmes and Balwani are both charged with two counts of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and nine counts of wire fraud.

The biotech company claimed to have a cheaper, more efficient alternative to traditional medical tests. But that unraveled spectacularly under the scrutiny of Wall Street Journal investigative reporter John Carreyrou.

In March 2018, the Securities and Exchange Commission announced “massive fraud” charges against Theranos, Holmes and Balwani, and with “raising more than $700 million from investors through an elaborate, years-long fraud.”

The SEC said the company and its CEO and COO misled partners and investors about its technology, misrepresented revenue projections, and falsely claimed it didn’t need regulatory approval for its testing technology. In the release announcing the charges, it was revealed Holmes and Theranos had reached a settlement with the SEC.

The charges and scandal proved to be too much for the company, which was once valued at $9 billion. In September 2018, Theranos announced it was preparing to dissolve.