New Delhi: Sunny Balwani, a former Theranos COO, was given a 13-year prison term for his involvement in the blood testing startup’s fraud. Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes, who received an 11-year term in a separate trial, was in a relationship with Balwani. According to Holmes’ testimony, her ex-boyfriend Balwani mistreated her and coerced her into lying to investors. At Theranos, her firm that she claimed was perfecting a device that could do a variety of tests with just a few drops of blood, she described Balwani as a controlling force. However, the claims were untrue and the technology was never functional.

According to US Attorney Stephanie Hinds, Balwani, 57, of Fremont, was sentenced on Wednesday to 12 years and 11 months in federal prison for fraud that endangered patient health by misrepresenting the reliability of Theranos’ blood analysis technology and that defrauded the company’s investors of millions of dollars. 

Image courtesy: ANI

US District Judge Edward Davila also ordered Balwani to undergo three years of supervision after his release from jail in addition to the 155-month prison term. The amount of compensation that Balwani must pay will be decided at an upcoming hearing. On March 15, 2023, Balwani was told to turn himself in to start serving his prison term.

From September 2009 to July 2016, Balwani worked for the Palo Alto-based blood testing business started in 2003 by his ex-girlfriend Elizabeth Holmes, who was once hailed as Silicon Valley’s emerging star.

Image courtesy: Reuters

Holmes was given a federal prison sentence of 11 years and 3 months last month by District Judge Davila, who also commanded that she turn herself in so that she may start serving her time on April 27, 2023. When Balwani first met Holmes, he was 18 years old.


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