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Elizabeth Holmes has given a series of bizarre interviews to the NYT as she delays starting her 11-year prison sentence

Former Theranos CEO Elizabeth Holmes alongside her boyfriend Billy Evans, walks back to her hotel following a hearing at the Robert E. Peckham U.S. Courthouse on March 17, 2023 in San Jose, California.Elizabeth Holmes has delayed her 11-year prison sentence with a last-minute appeal.

Philip Pacheco/Getty Images

  • Convicted fraudster Elizabeth Holmes has given a series of pre-prison interviews to the New York Times.
  • The at-times bizarre profile details what Holmes has been up to since her conviction and sentencing.
  • The Theranos founder says she volunteers for a rape-crisis hotline and dreams of doing health tech.

Disgraced Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes has given an extensive series of interviews to the New York Times, published days after she managed to delay the start of her 11-year prison sentence.

Among other apparently sympathetic details, Holmes told the Times she has spent the past year volunteering for a rape crisis hotline doing 12-hour shifts. 

Holmes hasn’t spoken to the media since 2016, and has seemingly used this opportunity variously to present herself as more human, to defend her record, and to continue to pitch herself as a future health-tech innovator.

On Theranos, she said: “I made so many mistakes and there was so much I didn’t know and understand, and I feel like when you do it wrong, it’s like you really internalize it in a deep way.”

Holmes experienced a spectacular downfall after then-Wall Street Journal reporter John Carreyrou dug into claims made by her $9 billion health-tech startup, Theranos, that it had invented blood-testing devices that only required tiny amounts of blood. Carreyrou reported in 2015 that these claims were false, triggering regulatory investigations and a lawsuit filed by the SEC.

Holmes was convicted of four counts of fraud and conspiracy in January 2022 and was handed an 11-year prison sentence. She was due to report to prison last month, but filed a last-minute appeal that bought her more time.

The 39-year-old became known for her trademark black turtleneck, red lipstick, messy blonde hair and (as it turns out, false) masculine voice, traits that she admitted to the Times weren’t “authentic.” 

Holmes’ partner, Billy Evans, and her two young children also appear throughout the profile. The fallen entrepreneur met Evans in 2017, as Theranos was collapsing. “Finding your person in the middle of all of this and experiencing that love when you’re going through hell is the most beautiful thing I’ve ever experienced,” she told the Times.

Holmes also said she had spent time volunteering for a rape crisis hotline, citing allegations of previous abuse as her motivation.

During a hearing in December 2021, as Insider previously reported, Holmes testified against her former romantic partner and ex-Theranos chief operating officer Ramesh “Sunny” Balwani, saying he had abused her both physically and emotionally.

She also shared with the court that she had been the victim of sexual assault when she was a student at Stanford, which prompted her to drop out and found Theranos. She told the Times that surviving the alleged assault at a fraternity party her sophomore year shaped her life choices. The newspaper reviewed a 52-page report of the alleged sexual assault. Holmes didn’t press charges.

Holmes also briefly touched on her ambitions to remain in health tech, particularly in COVID-19 testing. 

Any hoped-for rehabilitation, however, is likely to be stymied by Holmes’ conviction; Theranos’ aggressive response to the Wall Street Journal’s reporting; Holmes’ deflection of blame through her trial; and her reported reaction to the death by suicide of one of Theranos’ first employees.

Representatives for Holmes didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment from Insider. 

Read the original article on Business Insider