Convicted ex-Theranos CEO Elizabeth Holmes could be released from prison two years earlier than expected, according to the projected release date posted by the Bureau of Prisons.
Holmes, the founder of the now-defunct blood testing lab Theranos, reported to a minimum-security, all-female federal prison camp in Bryan, Texas, on May 30 for an 11-year, 3-month sentence.
According to the projected release date posted by the Federal Bureau of Prisons, the 39-year-old is set to spend nine years in prison, slashing her former sentence by two years.
A spokesperson for the Bureau of Prisons confirmed that Holmes had a projected release date of Dec. 29, 2032, reports NBC News.
The spokesperson could not provide an explanation for the shortened sentence due to “privacy, safety, and security reasons,” per NBC News. They added that inmates can earn good conduct time which is calculated into their projected release date.
Holmes is serving time for defrauding her investors of hundreds of millions of dollars through her once highly-praised blood-testing company Theranos, per the U.S. Department of Justice.
Holmes claimed that Theranos created advanced medical technology capable of diagnosing a slew of conditions with just a pinprick of blood. Over the span of a decade, Holmes took a seat among Silicon Valley royalty — she made it on the cover of Forbes and Fortune — and grew her startup business to a value of more than $9 billion.
Theranos attracted several high-profile investors, such as Rupert Murdoch, former Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, the Walton family (heirs to the Walmart fortune) and Larry Ellison. The board of directors included former secretaries of state George Shultz and Henry Kissinger, former U.S. Marine Corps Gen. James Mattis and former director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention William H. Foege, per Business Insider.
The Theranos empire came crashing down in the wake of multiple reports in 2015 — led by then-Wall Street Journal journalist John Carreyrou — that claimed Holmes’ tech was incapable of accurately diagnosing medical conditions and often produced false results.
After a lengthy trial, Holmes was sentenced with 11 years and three months in prison on Nov. 18, 2022.
“I stand before you taking responsibility for Theranos,” Holmes said, as reported by the Deseret News. “It was my life’s work.”
“I am devastated by my failings. I have felt deep pain for what people went through, because I failed them. To investors, patients, I am sorry. I regret my failings with every cell of my body.”
Brief timeline of the Elizabeth Holmes and Theranos debacle
March 2004: As a 19-year-old college sophomore studying chemical engineering, Elizabeth Holmes drops out of Stanford University to pursue her dreams of developing a company. She creates Theranos (a combinations of the words “therapy” and “diagnosis”).
- “I got to a point where I was enrolled in all these courses, and my parents were spending all this money, and I wasn’t going to any of them,” Holmes told The New Yorker. “I was doing this full time.”
- By December 2004, Holmes has raised $6 million from investors, per The New Yorker.
September 2009: Ramesh “Sunny” Balwani joins Theranos as COO with the promise of a $10 million loan.
- Balwani — who is 20 years older than Holmes — met Holmes on a language-immersion trip through Stanford. The pair secretly dated while they were running the company, per Forbes.
July 2013: Theranos adds Richard M. Kovacevich (former chief executive of Wells Fargo) and James Mattis (former U.S. Marine Corps general) to its board of directors, which already includes former secretaries of state George Shultz and Henry Kissinger.
September 2013: Nearly a decade after starting Theranos, Holmes announces that Theranos and Walgreens have entered a long-term partnership.
- The plan is to bring Theranos Wellness Centers to Walgreens nationwide where consumers can easily access Theranos blood-testing centers. The first center opens up in Palo Alto, California.
September 2014: At 30 years old, Holmes is named one of the richest women in America by Forbes. After revealing she owned 50% of Theranos, Holmes landed at No. 110 on the list with a net worth of $4.5 billion. She is the youngest and richest self-made female billionaire on the 2014 Forbes 400 list.
- In June 2014, Fortune said Theranos raised $400 million from equity sales to investors and values the company at $9 billion.
July 2015: The Food and Drug Administration approves Theranos to use a pinprick of blood for herpes testing. This is the first and only Theranos test given FDA approval.
October 2015: The Wall Street Journal publishes an investigative report that suggests Theranos technology doesn’t actually work.
- Holmes hits back by claiming The Wall Street Journal’s reporting is “factually and scientifically erroneous,” per The Washington Post.
- Theranos temporarily halts the use of tiny blood-collection vials over growing concerns from the FDA, per The New York Times.
January 2016: Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services issues a letter to Theranos claiming that its lab has failed to meet federal standards, putting patients in “immediate jeopardy.”
- In response to the letter, Walgreens says it will “immediately cease sending any clinical laboratory tests provided through Theranos Wellness Centers at Walgreens” until the issues raise by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services are resolved.
July 2016: The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services bans Holmes from running a blood-testing lab for two years, per The Wall Street Journal.
November 2016: Walgreens sues Theranos, seeking to recover the $140 million it put into the blood-testing tech, per The Wall Street Journal. A settlement is reached in 2017.
March 2018: Holmes and Balwani are charged with “massive fraud.”
- The pair raised money “through an elaborate, years-long fraud in which they exaggerated or made false statements about the company’s technology, business, and financial performance,” wrote the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.
June 2018: Holmes and Balwani are indicted on federal wire fraud charges. Both plead not guilty.
September 2018: Theranos is dissolved.
- David Taylor, who took over as CEO of Theranos, emails shareholders that the company must dissolve, according to a report from The Wall Street Journal. “We are now out of time,” Taylor wrote.
December 2020: Holmes’ criminal trial is delayed until 2021 due to the coronavirus pandemic, per CNBC.
March 2021: Holmes is pregnant with her first child. Her trial is further delayed, per CNN.
August 2021: Holmes’ trial officially begins with jury selection in August, according to The New York Times. Opening statements are given in September 2021.
January 2022: Holmes is found guilty of one count of conspiracy and three counts of wire fraud, per the U.S. Department of Justice.
November 2022: Request for retrial is denied. Holmes’ lawyers filed for retrial citing “newly discovered” evidence, per Reuters.
March 2023: With a looming prison sentence, Holmes has a second child.
- The Theranos founder seeks to delay her prison sentence due to the birth of her second child. Holmes’ defense team cited her having “two very young children” as an argument for why she should remain out of prison, per CBS News.
May 2023: Holmes reports to prison in Bryan, Texas.
July 2023: Holmes’ prison release date is reduced by two years.