Saturday, September 30, 2023

Ramesh Balwani of Indian descent sentenced to 20 years in prison for defrauding US investors and patients

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Indian origin Ramesh ‘Sunny’ BalwanicElizabeth’s former business partner and “boyfriend in secret” Holmesfounder and CEO of healthcare company Therano, has been found guilty of defrauding Theranos investors and patients in the US.

Balwani faced 10 counts of wire fraud and two counts of conspiracy to commit wire fraud.

After a three-month trial, a jury found him guilty on all 12 charges. He now faces up to 20 years in prison for each count, The roadside reported late Thursday.

Youngest billionaire Holmes has already been found guilty of defrauding investors.

Balwani of Indian descent was Holmes’ “boyfriend in secret”.

“They met when Holmes was 18 and Balwani 37 – she moved in with him the year after she dropped out of Stanford. She also said at trial that she had been raped as a Stanford student, which is part of the reason she didn’t finish college,” according to a previous TechCrunch report.

During the four-month lawsuit, Holmes detailed Balwani’s controlling behavior, including a written document that dictated her daily schedule, including what she ate, when she slept and how she dressed.

She said, “He was so disappointed in my mediocrity and he was trying to teach me how to get better.”

Holmes founded Theranos in 2003 and the company was once valued at over $9 billion.

In 2015 an exhibition in The Wall Street Journal revealed major problems with Theranos’ technology.

In 2018, Holmes and Balwani were charged with two counts of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and nine counts of wire fraud.

According to the U.S. Department of Justice, Holmes and Balwani used advertisements and solicitations to encourage and incite doctors and patients to use Theranos’ blood testing laboratory services, even though the defendants, according to the government, knew that Theranos was unable to provide consistently accurate and reliable results for certain blood tests.

“It is further alleged that the tests performed on Theranos technology were likely to contain inaccurate and unreliable results,” the Justice Department said.

Holmes and Balwani have defrauded physicians and patients by making false claims about Theranos’ ability to provide accurate, rapid, reliable and inexpensive blood tests and test results, and by omitting information about the limits and issues of Theranos’ technologies.


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