Monday, a California jury found one-time billionaire tech star Elizabeth Holmes guilty on three counts of wire fraud and one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud against investors. Each count carries a maximum 20-year penalty.
Homes co-founded a company called Theranos that claimed to have invented improved technology for doing blood tests. It was praised by many prominent people, and Holmes was compared to Steve Jobs before being accused of bilking investors out of hundreds of millions of dollars while covering up that the company’s technology was actually flawed and unreliable.
The case also has political ramifications, with some media outlets bringing up a visit to Theranos’ headquarters by then-Vice President Joe Biden in 2015. He effusively praised Theranos for its inspiring leadership in health technology.
I know it’s an easy target, but I’m not going to pile on Biden for this. I don’t expect him to do an in-depth investigation into every company where he makes a public appearance, and at the time, few suspected that there was anything fishy about Theranos. In fact, a lot of prominent people on both sides of the aisle were duped. If anything, it just shows how important it is to do your due diligence before investing in any company.