(Reuters) – A US jury on Thursday convicted former Theranos Inc. president Ramesh “Sunny” Balwani of deceiving investors and patients about starting a $ 9 billion blood test.
The jury in San Jose, California, considered for just over five days before convicting Balwani of two counts of conspiracy and 10 counts of fraud, a spokeswoman for U.S. Attorney Stephanie Hinds said.
The verdict was scheduled for November 15.
Therano’s founder Elizabeth Holmes, who initially faced the same charges, was convicted of three counts of fraud and one count of conspiracy in a separate trial in January. She is scheduled to be sentenced on September 26.
They were granted separate trials after Ms Holmes said she would testify that Mr. Balwani was insulted to her in their romantic relationship. Mr. Balwani denied the allegations.
“We are pleased with the jury̵7;s hard work and attention to the evidence presented,” Hinds said in a statement. “We appreciate the verdict and look forward to the verdict.”
Mr. Balwani’s lawyer Jeffrey Coopersmith said the defense was “obviously disappointed with the verdicts” and would consider all options including an appeal.
Mr Balwani and Ms Holmes were accused in 2018 of lying to investors about the company’s finances and its machines’ ability to run a wide range of tests from a few drops of blood. Prosecutors also charged the couple with duping patients for the accuracy of the tests.
Theranos investors were drawn to Ms. Holmes, with her deep, authoritative voice, black Steve Jobs-like turtleneck and her promise to elevate the laboratory testing industry by creating laptops that could run a wide range of tests.
The company praised work with drug manufacturers, pharmacies and the US military and received investments from media mogul Rupert Murdoch.
Theranos collapsed after the Wall Street Journal published a series of articles, beginning in 2015, suggesting that its devices were faulty and faulty.
During the trial, Ms. Holmes made the somewhat unusual decision to testify in her own defense and denied that she lied to investors. She has claimed that the evidence was insufficient to support the verdict.