Elizabeth Holmes and Ramesh “Sunny” Balwani, the former key executives of blood-testing startup Theranos, have been indicted by a grand jury on nine counts of wire fraud and two counts of conspiracy to commit wire fraud, The Washington Post reports.
The news comes three months after news that both were charged with “massive” fraud by the SEC and agreed resolve the civil charges, and only moments after the company announced Holmes had stepped down as CEO of the company, ceding her role to David Taylor, the company’s general council.
Once bearing a nearly $9 billion valuation, the company attracted some extremely high-profile figures to sing its praises, from former Secretary of State Henry Kissenger to current Secretary of Defense James Mattis. Theranos’s legacy now is as an object lesson in Silicon Valley’s magical thinking. Hobbled by revelations about false claims the company had made about its technology and partnerships, it slashed its already dwindling staff down to “two dozen or fewer” employees in April.
Perhaps this is the end of the long, bizarre saga of Theranos and Holmes—who is barred from holding a position as an executive officer for nearly 10 years, and was previously banned from operating a lab for two. Sadly, the real victims of this horrendously mismanaged company weren’t its deep-pocketed investors, but—if the portrait painted in Wall Street Journal reporter John Carreyrou’s book Bad Blood is any indication—the many well-intentioned engineers, scientists, and other employees which the company churned through at legendary speed, most often for disagreeing with Holmes’s methods or lack thereof.
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