Elizabeth Holmes, the founder of Theranos, was found guilty of defrauding investors in her blood-testing startup. The verdict was announced by the jury following a three-month long trial which took place at a federal courthouse in San Jose.
While Holmes was cleared of four other charges, she was convicted of four charges - one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud, and three counts of wire fraud.
Holmes Blamed Former Lover of Physical and Sexual Abuse
Holmes was 18 years old when she met then 37-year-old Balwani, during a Chinese-language immersion trip in 2002. After dropping out of Stanford in 2003, Holmes started working full-time on her blood-testing startup.
During the trial, Holmes had blamed her former lover Ramesh 'Sunny' Balwani of forcing her to commit fraud and abusing her physically and sexually.
It was in 2009 that Balwani joined Holmes's company as a president and later on became the chief operating officer. A tearful Holmes told jurors last month that Balwani would get very angry with her and forced her to have sex against her wishes.
"He would get very angry with me and then he would sometimes come upstairs to our bedroom and force me to have sex with him when I didn't want to," Holmes said of Balwani. She also added that Balwani would also criticize her. "Sunny was saying he was astonished by my mediocrity and he was exhausted with me, that I was a monkey that was trying to fly a spaceship," she told jurors.
The Daily Mail reported that text messages exchanged between the two former lovers also surfaced during the trial. It included the couple expressing their love for each other to discussions about internal staff complaints and FDA clearances.
Who is Ramesh Balwani?
The National News reported that Balwani's Sindhi-Hindu family migrated from Pakistan to the U.S. After completing his studies from the University of Texas at Austin, Balwani joined Microsoft as a sales Manager.
Later, he joined CommerceBid.com as a president. However, following the collapse of the company, Balwant left the business with nearly $40m, as per the outlet.
Almost a year before leaving Holmes' startup, the couple had discussed about Balwani leaving the company. In one of the texts, he complained to Holmes saying, "I worked for 6 years day and night to help you. I'm sad at where you and I are. I thought it would be better." He even told Holmes that she needs him.