Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes attempted to flee US, prosecutors claim

Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes attempted to flee US, prosecutors claim
Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes attempted to flee US, prosecutors claim

Prosecutors allege Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes attempted to flee the United States shortly after being convicted of fraud last year.

The 38-year-old purchased a one-way ticket to Mexico last January, according to new court documents.

“The trip was canceled after the government raised the issue of this unauthorized flight,” the prosecutor said.

Holmes was once found guilty of defrauding investors in her blood-testing startup, which she was valued at $9 billion (£7.5 billion).

The former Silicon Valley star falsely claimed the technology could diagnose diseases with just a few drops of blood.

The latest court documents filed Thursday also say Holmes’ partner bought a one-way ticket to Mexico.

“The government expects to respond that [Holmes] did not actually leave the country as planned, but it is impossible to say with certainty what [she] would have done had it not intervened. “It’s difficult,” the prosecutor said.

The BBC has reached out to Holmes’ lawyers for comment.

Elizabeth Holmes: From Tech Star to Convicted Scammer
Holmes said she was convicted of investor fraud in early January 2022, and in November she was sentenced to over 11 years in prison. During her sentencing hearing, she was ordered to jail on April 27 of this year.

But shortly after, she appealed her own conviction and asked her judge to keep her free after April while her appeal was heard in federal court. This process may take her a year.

Her attorney also said Holmes raises “substantial issues” that could warrant a new trial.

In the latest California lawsuit, Holmes says she is paying $13,000 (£10,500) a month to live on her estate while her appeal is being heard.

The prosecution hopes to appear in April as scheduled. “The time has come to answer the crimes committed by Elizabeth Holmes nearly ten years ago,” they said. There is no system of justice.”

A judge is scheduled to hear her motion to continue her prison sentence pending her appeal on March 17.

Holmes founded Theranos after dropping out of Stanford University at age 19. The company’s value skyrocketed after management said it could revolutionize disease diagnostics.

The rise and fall of startups has been covered in several popular podcasts and TV shows, including her Hulu series The Dropout, starring Amanda Seyfried as Holmes.

Holmes’ business partner and former Theranos president, Sunny Balwani, was sentenced to about 13 years in prison in December.

Holmes apologized for his “failure” in business, saying he was “deeply hurt by what people have gone through because I let them down.”

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