Disgraced Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes is getting a few more months of freedom before her upcoming sentencing. A judge will sentence Holmes on September 26 following her recent convictions on four fraud-related charges.
Holmes’ High-Profile Case
Until Holmes is sentenced, she will remain free on a $500,00 bail. This might not seem like a lot of money, given that Holmes is being accused of defrauding investors out of $144 million, but former Santa Clara County prosecutor Steven Clark says there was no need for higher bail.
“There’s really no place for her to go that she wouldn’t be found,” Clark said, referring to Holmes’ high-profile status. The Theranos founder would have a hard time fleeing anywhere without getting recognized.
In addition to her highly publicized case, Holmes is also the subject of a new Hulu miniseries, The Dropout. The show focuses on Holmes, played by Amanda Seyfried, and her dramatic rise and fall in Silicon Valley. This won’t be the only Hollywood project focused on Holmes.
Jennifer Lawrence is set to star in a movie about the Theranos founder, titled “Bad Blood.” The film will be directed by Adam McKay, whom Lawrence worked with on 2021’s Oscar-nominated film Don’t Look Up.
How Long Could She Spend Behind Bars?
Holmes was convicted in January of defrauding her investors, misleading them into thinking she was developing a groundbreaking blood-testing method. She was acquitted on four total counts of fraud-related activity. The entrepreneur faces up to 80 years in prison; each count against her carries a maximum term of 20 years.
The lengthy amount of time between conviction and sentencing is unusual, but former federal prosecutor Amanda Kramer told NPR that it might have something to do with Holmes’ former partner and Theranos president Ramesh “Sunny” Balwani.
Balwani’s trial begins this month, and Kramer suggested that “some facts established in Balwani’s trial might prove to be relevant in Holmes’ sentencing.” The two met in 2002 when Holmes was 18 and Balwani was 37.
Holmes and Balwani started dating two years later, developing Theranos together. The pair split in 2016, just two years before their lengthy legal battles regarding Theranos would begin. Holmes is getting one more summer as a free woman, but with the notoriety surrounding her case, it’s likely that she will spend a significant amount of time behind bars.