Theranos Founder To Face Trial Next Year On Fraud Charges. How Did She Pull It Off? ‘She Was Just White’

Avatar
Written by Ann Brown
Theranos
Via Giphy

Theranos was considered a breakthrough health tech company. The privately promised to have developed blood tests that only needed very small amounts of blood. Problem was the claim was false. Now the founder of Theranos Elizabeth Holmes is set to go on trial next summer to face criminal charges for allegedly defrauding investors, doctors and the public, The Associated Press reported.

“Holmes founded Theranos in 2003, claiming that the company would be able to conduct clinical tests using only small amounts of blood, an innovation that would revolutionize blood testing and health services,” The Hill reported. The Justice Department started investigating the company in 2013 looking into allegations that  Holmes and former company president Ramesh “Sunny” Balwani made false claims to investors about the company’s technology.

Listen to GHOGH with Jamarlin Martin | Episode 10: Karen Fleshman Jamarlin talks with Karen Fleshman, founder of Racy Conversations. The lawyer and activist talks about women of privilege exploiting civil rights and diversity movements, and whether Kamala Harris can be trusted on criminal justice reform.

Last week, the U.S. District Court Judge Edward Davila of the Northern District of California ruled that the trial against the two will start July 28, 2020.

Holmes and Balwani have pleaded not guilty to wire fraud and conspiracy to commit wire fraud. But if convicted, they could each face 20 years in prison.

In 2018, Holmes resigned as the leader of Theranos and agreed to pay a $500,000 fine to settle charges by the Securities and Exchange Commission that she had committed a “massive fraud” that led to dubbed investors to invest $700 million into Theranos.

According to TechCrunch, the trial will begin in August 2020, with jury selection beginning on July 28th, 2020. Prosecutors have collected millions of pages of documents The Wall Street Journal reported.

It was actually the Wall Street Journal who in 2015 that reported that the company’s claims were lies, and that the company had covered up results to hide that their technology didn’t work. Theranos shut down its labs in 2016 and close down completely in 2018.

Some have questioned how Holmes was able to pull off such a massive fraud for more than a decade. Was it white privilege? As someone tweeted: “She exemplifies white privilege and is protected by the powerful in business & government. She was a criminal while on and off your list. She deserves to #BeGone for long time.”