SAN JOSE, Calif. - Disgraced Theranos CEO Elizabeth Holmes appears to be soon bound for prison after an appeals court Tuesday rejected her bid to remain free while she tries to overturn her conviction in a blood-testing hoax that brought her fleeting fame and fortune.
In another ruling issued late Tuesday, U.S. District Judge Edward Davila ordered Holmes to pay $452 million in restitution to the victims of her crimes. Holmes is being held jointly liable for that amount with her former lover and top Theranos lieutenant, Ramesh "Sunny" Balwani, who is already in prison after being convicted on a broader range of felonies in a separate trial.
The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals decision on Holmes’ attempt to avoid prison comes nearly three weeks after she deployed a last-minute legal maneuver to delay the start of her 11-year sentence. She had been previously ordered to surrender to authorities on April 27 by Davila, who sentenced her in November.
Davila will now set a new date for Holmes, 39, to leave her current home in the San Diego area and report to prison. Her attorney is asking for that date to be May 30.
The punishment will separate Holmes from her current partner, William "Billy" Evans, their 1-year-old son, William, and 3-month-old daughter, Invicta. Holmes’ pregnancy with Invicta — Latin for "invincible," or "undefeated" — began after a jury convicted her on four counts of fraud and conspiracy in January 2022.
Davila has recommended that Holmes serve her sentence at a women’s prison in Bryan, Texas. It hasn’t been disclosed whether the federal Bureau of Prisons accepted Davila’s recommendation or assigned Holmes to another facility.
Balwani, 57, began a nearly 13-year prison sentence in April after being convicted on 12 counts of fraud and conspiracy last July. He was incarcerated in a Southern California prison last month after losing a similar effort to remain free on bail while appealing his conviction.
The verdict against Holmes came after 46 days of trial testimony and other evidence that cast a spotlight on a culture of greed and hubris that infected Silicon Valley as technology became a more pervasive influence on society and the economy during the past 20 years.