Elizabeth Holmes’ Theranos Trial This Week: Safeway and Walgreens Testify

Elizabeth Holmes, the founder of Theranos, arrived in federal court on September 8 for starting discussions in a long-awaited trial.

David Odyssho / Getty Images

The trial of Elizabeth Holmes, the former CEO of Theranos, took place this Thursday for the first time since the trial began more than a month ago. COVID horror and other schedule issues have caused short weeks so far, but the case is being contested in the court of Judge Edward Davila in San Jose until Friday.

The focus of the testimony over the past few weeks has been on a startup deal between Safeway and Walgreens to provide Theranos’ innovative blood testing technology for use in stores. Executives from both mega-retailers testified that they were sold for Theranos, its technology, and the charisma of its founder.

“Not all CEOs are the same. She will rise to the top of the mountain in terms of vision in terms of commanding information,” former Safeway CEO Steven Burd told the court. According to The Wall Street Journal..

Holmes Prosecuted with multiple counts Conspiracy and fraud against allegations she made about the company’s compact blood tester. Investigation has revealed that this technology has serious problems. Within a few years, Theranos has become one of the most notorious Silicon Valley stories of the decade, with a value of $ 9 billion.

Safeway spent hundreds of millions of dollars setting up a new clinic in the store as part of its Theranos partnership, but the device never reached anywhere. Walgreens started an in-store blood test at Holmes’ company, but eventually thousands of test results were invalidated, and Walgreens sued Theranos in a case that was finally resolved.

In the early stages of the trial, testimony was also seen from former employees such as Erica Chan, who worked in the lab of a company that tests blood samples. “I left Theranos because I was uncomfortable processing the patient’s sample,” she testified.

Former lab director Adam Rosendorf also spent a few days at a stand explaining how the company prioritizes profits over patients. He told the jury that he was under pressure to defend the false test results. During the cross-examination, Holmes’ lawyer pointed out a contradiction in Rosendorf’s testimony and asked how hard he worked to get the issue to the attention of management.

The trial will last for several months and more than 200 witnesses may testify. So far, two juries have been dismissed and replaced by alternative juries. The young woman was released because of financial difficulties, but another said that Buddhist beliefs about forgiveness would be difficult to reach a verdict.

Holmes’ defense lawyer argued in an opening statement in September that the failure of a healthcare startup was due to “technical” flaws rather than shameful founder deception. Holmes lawyer Lance Wade told a jury in San Jose’s court that the story of Theranos’s remarkable fall was “much more human and realistic, often … complex and boring.”

“Overtime, due to lack of money, Elizabeth Holmes decided to lie,” US federal prosecutor Robert Reach told 12 juries last month.

Defendant lawyers later argued that Theranos investors were well aware of the risks associated with supporting startups.

The court drama has been produced for over three years, and Holmes was initially charged in June 2018. Also, the COVID-19 pandemic and the birth of Holmes’ child on July 10th this year delayed the start of the trial many times. ..

Here’s what else you need to know about one of the biggest exams in the last decade:

What happened to Holmes and Theranos?

In 2003, Holmes dropped out of Stanford University at the age of 19 and founded Theranos with the goal of disrupting the blood testing industry. The company said it requires a smaller amount of blood to be drawn than traditional intravenous blood draws and is developing a unique technology that is more portable than traditional tests sent to the lab.

Theranos began to gain more mainstream attention when it registered Walgreens and Safeway as potential customers in 2013. At one point, startups were valued at over $ 9 billion.

Holmes has begun to appear on the covers of various publications, including: luckFrom time to time, she compares her apparent power of confusion and her taste for high-necked black tops with Steve Jobs.

But the fate of both Holmes and Theranos began to change in 2015. The Wall Street Journal digs deeper To the company. The journal reported that a small portion of the tests were performed on a test machine from a company named Edison, and many tests were performed on other companies’ machines using diluted blood samples. The accuracy of the test results the patient received from Theranos was also questioned.

This is all Accusation filed against Holmes in 2018, Settlement with the Securities and Exchange Commission and shortly thereafter the permanent closure of Theranos.

2019 documentary, Bad Blood: Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startup by The Wall Street Journal reporter John Kaleiro And multiple podcasts about the company’s plunge helped bring mainstream attention to the story.

Former Theranos employee and whistleblower Tyler Schultz talked to CNET About the whole saga in 2020.

What is Holmes charged for?

Holmes Formally billed With 2 counts of plots to commit wire fraud and 10 counts of wire fraud.

“Prices [Holmes’] Deceptive expression about [Theranos] And its medical testing technology. ” Statement of the U.S. District Court in Northern California..

In essence, Holmes has been accused of lying to patients about how the company’s blood tests worked and how effective the tests were. Some of the accusations also relate to investors who allegedly mislead Holmes about Theranos’ internal structure and the expected returns from the company.

If convicted, Holmes could be sentenced to up to 20 years in prison.

What is the aspect of Holmes’ story?

Holmes denied that the allegations made by the journal’s first report were true, but she had never told her side the story from that point on.

Holmes said in 2015 on CNBC’s Mad Money, “This is what happens when you work to change things. They first think you’re crazy, then fight you, and suddenly you’re in the world. To change. ”

The 37-year-old reportedly pursued a book deal to bring out her story. This book didn’t come true, Widely acclaimed HBO documentary Director Alex Gibney announced The Inventor: Out for Blood in Silicon Valley in 2019 about Theranos’ collapse. She attends the event because she didn’t portray Holmes in a flattering light and she didn’t work with the filmmaker. Most of the last 50 years remain a mystery.

Holmes’ lawyer comes from a powerful Washington company that defended President Bill Clinton in the impeachment trial. One possibility is that she followed a Silicon Valley-like spirit of “counterfeiting it until you achieved it,” and she always believed in the long-term potential of the company and its technology. Ultimately, claim to fulfill that promise.

According to The Wall Street Journal“She believed that the alleged misrepresentation was true and therefore Theranos was a legitimate business that created value for investors,” Holmes’ lawyer said. ..

When Wade called the company’s technology “real” and “innovative,” there was a hint of this defense in the opening statement.

August 28, Newly unsealed court filings suggested Holmes She was able to protect herself by claiming to have been psychologically, sexually and emotionally abused by former President Theranos and her former boyfriend Ramesh “Sunny” Barwani.

This strategy was also foreseen in the opening discussion, where Wade referred to Balwani’s temper and promised to provide more relevant evidence during the trial.

Balwani’s lawyer called the allegations of abuse “outrageous.” One of Holmes’ lawyers’ filings said she was likely to testify.

It’s easy to see if Holmes will eventually be in a position to tell things to her side.

How can I see the trial?

The trial officially began on September 7, with discussions opening the next day. There is no online feed for the trial and the use of TV cameras in court is not allowed, so the best way to track a case is through a room reporter who takes notes in the old-fashioned way.

With a total of more than 200 potential witnesses identified between the prosecution and the defense, the testimony could last for weeks.

Balwani is facing similar accusations in another trial scheduled for next year.

Both Holmes and Balwani pleaded not guilty. Elizabeth Holmes’ Theranos Trial This Week: Safeway and Walgreens Testify

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