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Elizabeth Holmes, former chief executive of the failed pathology company Theranos, will have to wait more than eight months to be sentenced, district judge Edward Davila, overseeing the case, decided Jan 12.
After a four-month trial, a jury on Jan 3 found the one-time Silicon Valley superstar guilty on four counts of fraud in connection with the collapse of Theranos. The sums involved run into hundreds of millions of dollars.
Holmes, 37, faces a maximum of 20 years in federal prison, though legal experts doubt the judge will be so hard on her, reported wskg.org.
Till her sentencing hearing begins, Holmes will be free on a bond for $500,000 secured by property. News reports say she lives at a $135 million Silicon Valley estate with partner Billy Evans, son of San Diego hotel magnate Bill Evans. They recently had a baby boy.
In March, Ramesh ‘Sunny’ Balwani, who was Holmes’s boyfriend and No 2 at Theranos, will go on trial on fraud charges in the same San Jose, California, courthouse where she was convicted. His trial is scheduled to begin on March 9.
Amanda Kramer, a former federal prosecutor and now a white-collar defense attorney, said the judge must have decided to wait for Balwani’s trial to be completed to sentence Holmes.
“It’s not typical for a case to be sentenced eight months out, but this is not a typical case,” NPR quoted her saying. “Some facts established in Balwani’s trial might prove to be relevant in Holmes’s sentencing.”
Holmes’s trial lasted almost four months. Prosecutors called 29 witnesses to make the case that she intentionally deceived investors and patients by lying about Theranos’s blood-testing technology and pushing misleading statements about its business partnerships and financial outlook.
The jury acquitted her of four counts related to patient fraud, was deadlocked on three investor fraud counts, but found her guilty of four charges linked to defrauding of investors.
Theranos, valued at $9 billion in 2014, was officially dissolved in 2018. Holmes’s rise and fall has inspired a forthcoming Hulu series. A feature film is also in the works.