Jury selection for the Elizabeth Holmes trial begins today.
Jury selection begins Tuesday in the long-awaited trial of Elizabeth Holmes, the disgraced founder of blood testing start-up Theranos, who faces a dozen counts of conspiracy to commit fraud and wire fraud.
At the heart of the trial are questions about whether Holmes, 37, knew about problems with Theranos’ blood testing equipment and whether she deliberately misled investors on the company’s technology. If convicted, he could face up to 20 years in prison.
The case caught public attention as another example of a Silicon Valley start-up gone wrong. But Theranos was unusual in that it was led by a female entrepreneur. Ms. Holmes took advantage of that gap, using it to attract attention. She often wore a Steve Jobs-esque uniform of a black turtleneck and spoke in an unusually deep voice. Before falling from Theranos’ grace, Ms. Holmes was crowned the world’s youngest billionaire and regularly posed for magazine covers.
His high profile can become a challenge for jury selection. Prosecutors and its defense attorneys may find it difficult to choose jurors who have not made up their mind about the case. According to court filings last week, nearly half of the 200 potential jurors had already consumed media related to the case.
Prospective jurors fill out a 28-page questionnaire asking them about their media consumption habits, medical history, and knowledge of more than 200 potential witnesses. The even more comprehensive questionnaire, submitted by Ms. Holmes’ legal team, included more than 100 questions. In June, it was dismissed by Judge Edward Davila of the US District Court for the Northern District of California, who is overseeing the case. The lawsuit is in San Jose, Calif.
The jury selection is expected to be extended until Wednesday and could go on longer. The preliminary debate will begin next week.
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