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For more than a week now, Elizabeth Holmes has testified at her own trial, where she faces 11 criminal fraud charges for lying to employees and investors about her blood-testing company, Theranos. Her testimony came three months after the trial, in which the defense claimed that she was a young, naive businessman who was cheated by her boyfriend and business partner at the time, Ramesh Balwani. investors about the state of her technology.
For years, Holmes touted Theranos as a disruptive start-up that could test for hundreds of diseases with just a few drops of blood, when in reality she was using faulty technology and exaggerated exaggerations. its ability to both investors and government officials. She has insisted that she trusts her technology and has not knowingly deceived anyone and pleads not guilty.
On Monday, Holmes blamed a lot on Balwani, accused him of emotional and physical abuse and said he undermined her confidence in running her business and manipulated her into making false statements.
Balwani and Holmes were 37 and 18 years old when they met on a college trip that Holmes went to China. Balwani, a Silicon Valley entrepreneur who worked with Bill Gates as a sales executive in the early days of Microsoft, has no medical experience. According to her testimony, she contacted him a year after they met, when she dropped out of Stanford to start Theranos. In her testimony, she recalled telling him she was raped while at Stanford, to which he replied that she was “safe now because I met him.” Five years later, he joined Theranos as its president.
According to Holmes’s testimonyBalwani is not only controlling when it comes to her business, but also their relationship: She claims he prescribes the food she eats to keep her.”pure, ” Ordered her schedule and the clothes she wore, kept her away from her family, and forced her to have sex with him when she didn’t want to. Her defense provided iPhone notes she wrote while they were dating, including one she typed after he was allegedly assaulted that read:
Don’t enjoy literally anything about it or who I am if I did. That’s hurt. So many, so much. Can’t focus on anything except why? Why hurt yourself? Can’t even move let alone sit up or actually sit up. Lying swollen. Literally.
According to Holmes’s account, Balwani also has a great influence on her business decisions and often undermines her confidence in her own choices. She said he texted her in meetings criticizing her tactics and once wrote to her, “I’ve molded you.” She said, “He told me I didn’t know what I was doing in business, that my beliefs were wrong, that he was surprised at my mediocrity, and that if I followed my instincts, myself, I will fail.” He is said to have told her to “become a new Elizabeth” to achieve success. “He impacted everything about me,” she said, “and I don’t quite get it.”
Holmes’ defense presented documents which she said were written in Balwani’s handwriting, told her she was “a monkey trying to pilot a spaceship” and gave instructions about how she will wake up in the morning, time spent in meetings and what. to focus on throughout the day. Her attorneys also put together a schedule she wrote for herself that she said was Balwani’s directive: “get up and thank God most things just don’t make sense” at the time. 4 a.m., “does everything I say, word for word” and “doesn’t show excitement.”
Holmes said she moved out of their shared apartment in 2016, after investigate at the Theranos lab discovered serious flaws in its blood test. She testified that it wasn’t until then that she believed Theranos’ technology worked, and that testing made her realize Balwani was “not who I thought he was”. They were indicted together in 2018 and Holmes’ lawyers have argued to separate their fraud cases, with Balwani’s trial the following year. Her charges were made public in August, just before her trial began, when court documents It’s not a secret that Balwani’s years of abuse influenced Holmes’ state of mind when making business decisions. One filing states that Balwani would throw “hard, sharp objects” at Holmes. Balwani denied the allegations in the court documents.
Before Monday, Holmes’ testimony largely contradicted what her attorneys had argued: that she was inexperienced and didn’t understand what she was doing when she misled investors into believing her technology was effective. fruit. By most accounts, including her own, she’s a CEO with complete control over what happens at her company. She testified that Balwani’s influence affected her entire life but denied that he told her what to tell investors and journalists about Theranos. Balwani again denied the charges through a lawyer present at the trial.
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