Theranos Inc founder Elizabeth Holmes has accused her former boyfriend, who became president of the blood-trying startup, of abusing her, court files unsealed on Saturday confirmed, hinting at a probable defense strategy with jury selection in her fraud trial set to begin next week.
In courtroom filings submitted greater than 18 months ago, Holmes’ legal professionals stated they deliberated to provide proof that Ramesh “Sunny” Balwani abused her emotionally and psychologically in a dating that spanned more than a decade. That includes the period when the enterprise claimed its technology could allow a wide range of clinical assessments with a few drops of blood.
Theranos, which Holmes founded in 2003 at the age of nineteen, collapsed in March 2018 while she, Balwani and the $9 billion employer were charged with fraud by U.S. regulators. Theranos had made Holmes, a Stanford University dropout, a Silicon Valley megastar.
In the filings, Holmes’ legal professionals argued that the alleged “intimate partner abuse” became applicable to the question of whether or not she knew that financial information furnished to traders and others was fake. Holmes intends to plead guilty to Balwani, alleging he exerted control over her through abusive dating, the filings indicate.
Balwani, whose case is being treated one by one, has denied the allegations.
“Mr. Balwani unequivocally denies that he engaged in any abuse at any time,” his legal professionals wrote in a December 2019 filing.
Holmes and Balwani have both pleaded not guilty to expenses that they defrauded buyers, doctors and sufferers with the aid of falsely claiming Theranos should revolutionize scientific labs by trying out its generation.
Legal professionals at Williams & Connolly for Holmes and legal professionals for Balwani at Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe couldn’t right now be reached for comment.
Assistant U.S. attorney Jeff Schenk, the lead prosecutor in the case, did not reply to an electronic mail looking for comment.
Holmes’ legal professionals had previously flagged that they could make her mental health a problem in the case. In the remaining months, they said Mindy Mechanic, a California State University at Fullerton professor focusing on the psychosocial consequences of violence, trauma and victimization, would offer professional testimony at trial.
The case is USA v. Holmes, U.S. District court docket, Northern District of California, No. 18-cr-00258.
Theranos | Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter @njtimesofficial. To get the latest updates