After 10 hours behind her on the witness stand, it became clear how Elizabeth Holmes, the shameful founder of blood testing startup Theranos, managed to persuade a group of investors to participate. Break up with hundreds of millions of dollars.
This week, as it was then, the 37-year-old Stanford University dropout seemed to have the answer to everything.
She already knew these questions were helpful, as her lead lawyer Kevin Downey did; in the San Jose court, all parts of a calm and calm display were maskless and organic Delivered behind the glass.
When she defended herself against fraud charges, Holmes sometimes seemed relaxed this week, and she even smiled at the judge’s jokes. It will become more difficult soon. Government prosecutors are likely to have their long-awaited interrogation early next week.
Downey guides Holmes through carefully planned testimony to achieve two goals. First, show Holmes as an ambitious young entrepreneur who has a deep understanding of her work and firmly believes that her vision is possible.
Second, Holmes must address and best suppress some of the government’s strongest evidence.
In her position on Tuesday, she quickly admitted one of the most serious allegations: She personally revised Theranos’ report to include the logos of Pfizer and Schering-Plough.
Prosecutors said that this implies that the pharmaceutical giant has approved Theranos technology, but this is not the case. Nonetheless, these documents were sent by Holmes to Walgreens executives as part of a successful campaign to open “health centers” in as many as 3,000 pharmacy chains. Walgreens became a breakthrough customer of Theranos, and this transaction was a springboard for another round of huge investments, which meant that Theranos became a $9 billion company.
“This work was done in collaboration with these companies, and I tried to convey this,” Holmes said of her editorial intervention, acknowledging that the pharmaceutical company did not know her behavior. “I wish I did differently,” she went on to add-it was a rare regret.
Then she took another line of attack: As previous witnesses said, Theranos covered up the use of traditional test machines because its own hardware was not up to the task.
Holmes dug deep, because she has to deal with a large number of tests from Walgreens customers, she has chosen to rely on hardware made by companies such as Siemens. She explained that the Theranos machine is designed to only process samples of one person at a time, but third-party technologies, such as machines made by Siemens, can process more samples.
When her lawyer asked her why she didn’t share details about the process changes with Walgreens, its clients, or Theranos’ investors, Holmes claimed that she was far from carefully planning a cover-up, and was actually protecting a new Invention: The ability to use existing testing machines to analyze smaller blood samples.
“This is an invention, and we learned from our lawyers that we must protect it as a trade secret,” Holmes said. “A large medical device company like Siemens can replicate what we do. They have far more engineers than us.”
Sometimes, the atmosphere inside and outside the courtroom exposed the severe situation that Holmes may face, and Holmes became a mother in July. She faces 11 charges of wire fraud and conspiracy to commit wire fraud, all of which are related to a comprehensive allegation that her promise to reduce blood test costs and discomfort is false. If convicted, she will face up to 20 years in prison.
Whether it was a lucky timing or a well-executed plan, Holmes was summoned to the defense’s witness stand late Friday afternoon, sounding a wake-up call for the domestic and international media to arrive in San Jose on Monday morning to listen to her. She really did it for the first time since Theranos collapsed.
Now, this also means that the jurors have to go home for the Thanksgiving holiday. The first thing they think of is Sherlock Holmes’s defense—not the government’s accusation.
Every day at 3 am, those who are most eager to get one of the approximately 30 public seats in the court begin to arrive, and two reporters implement a strictly documented queuing system to reward early risers. The system was praised by a local teacher who decided to join out of curiosity. She said that she organized her 7-year-old children in almost the same way.
Nearby, an opportunistic-if not entirely serious-woman opened a suitcase and showed off a series of “commodities”, including a $40 gold wig or a black Sherlock-necked sweater for the same price.
This scene proves that although this may not be what she wants, Holmes has undoubtedly become an industry icon. When she walked into the courtroom on Tuesday, a male supporter shouted: “Bosswoman! God bless you boss!” — a condescending nickname, but it expressed the emotions of some people. They pointed out that for all reasons For failed start-ups led by men, this is a case in the history of Silicon Valley on the dock that a woman finds herself talking about the most.
Others believe that this is not Sherlock Holmes’s gender, but her choice of business. Compared to the “quick move and break the rules” Wild West of software and social networks, the highly regulated healthcare industry provides ample opportunities for ruthless scrutiny, as well as the cost of making mistakes—as an eyewitness here attests In that way, he was wrongly told by Theranos that she had a miscarriage-very serious.
If Sherlock Holmes is convicted, some people think it will be tied to future innovators, triggering fear of failure. If Holmes is gone, it will send a signal to investors that even if they claim to have been lying, they will not face criminal consequences.