Updated on 11/19/22 at 1:27 p.m E.T: On Friday, the former CEO of Theranos Elizabeth Holmes was sentenced to more than 11 years in prison for giving investors false information regarding her start-up. The Stanford University dropout was convicted of four counts of wire fraud and conspiracy to commit wire fraud following a four-month-long trial.
Holmes denied that she was aware of the fraud. Federal District Judge Edward J. Davila confirmed she will receive prison time and her sentence will begin on April 27. “The tragedy of the case is that Ms. Holmes is brilliant,” he said, acknowledging that Holmes made it into a male-dominated industry.
“She made it, she got into that world.” However, making it big in the venture capital world isn’t an excuse to commit fraud Davila stated. After the sentence was announced, Holmes hugged her family and quickly left the courtroom.
In an 82-page document that was filed on Thursday, the legal team for Elizabeth Holmes informed U.S. District Judge Edward Davila that they believe she shouldn’t go to prison. Earlier this year, Holmes was convicted on four felony counts of investor fraud and conspiracy. The former Theranos CEO could face up to 20 years in prison.
If the judge does believe Holmes should go to prison, her lawyers are asking for just 18 months. The request for preferential treatment for crimes of this magnitude is peak white woman behavior. Holmes started Theranos at just 19 years old and collected nearly $1 billion dollars from investors for a fraudulent company.
Holmes claimed to have developed a small device that could scan for hundreds of diseases and other possible health problems with a few drops of blood taken with a finger prick. However, the tests produced incredibly inaccurate results, which Holmes tried to cover up until the media as well as mandated audits exposed the truth.
Earlier this year, Holmes’ story was eventually turned into a miniseries called “The Dropout” on Hulu. In the filing, her lawyers basically stated she was a model citizen: “Ms. Holmes is no danger to the public. She has no criminal history, has a perfect pretrial services compliance record, and is described by the people who know her repeatedly as a gentle and loving person who tries to do the right thing.”
However, two former prosecutors Amanda Kramer and Duncan Levin told The Associated Press that she’s likely to receive a sentence of 9 to 17 years. They also noted that Davila has the discretion to be more lenient. Holmes’ lawyers also claim that her past traumas are another reason she shouldn’t get jail time.
When you look at how Black and brown people are jailed at higher rates and disproportionately receive longer sentences for crimes less severe, there is no sympathy for a soulless scammer who put the lives of innocent people at risk.