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At Elizabeth Holmes Trial, Dishonesty and Ambition Clash

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The trial of the Theranos Inc. founder, which opened Wednesday, is shaping up as a media event that will explore the dark side of Silicon Valley superstardom.

The trial of Elizabeth Holmes — a former “Silicon Valley superstar” who founded Theranos Inc., a disgraced blood testing start-up that allegedly lied to investors and consumers about its success, even as its technology repeatedly failed — began Wednesday, The Wall Street Journal reported. Expected to last three months and potentially feature testimony from Holmes herself, the trial is shaping up to generate significant media attention, and early legal arguments are already emerging. Assistant U.S. attorney Robert Leach described to the jury Holmes involvement with Theranos, which has been the subject of documentaries, books and podcasts.

According to Leach, Holmes defrauded patients and investors, including Henry Kissinger and Betsy DeVos, by touting the success of her ineffective technology as she willingly “cut corners” and “cheat[ed]” to raise money. With the assistance of top executive Ramesh “Sunny” Balwani, Holmes directed employees to alter commercial blood machines to work with small amounts of blood, which allowed her to “‘buy time’” when she couldn’t deliver on planned partnerships with Walgreens and Safeway. But attorneys for Holmes, whose investigation by the WSJ led, in-part, to Theranos’ demise, attempted to portray the 37-year-old as a hardworking, albeit “naive,” entrepreneur.

Source: The Crime Report

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