Elizabeth Holmes trial: key witness backs his testimony after expressing regret

Theranos founder filed for a fresh trial after Adam Rosendorff told her he felt ‘he had done something wrong’

In a hearing on Monday evaluating Elizabeth Holmes’s request for a new trial in her fraud case, a key witness stood by his previous testimony.

The Theranos founder was set to be sentenced on 17 October after being convicted on four of 11 counts of fraud for her role in the blood-testing company, but the sentencing was rescheduled after a key witness for the prosecution said he regretted the role he played in her conviction.

That witness, former Theranos lab director Adam Rosendorff, appeared in August at the home Holmes shares with her partner William Evans to express his remorse, her lawyers claimed in a motion for a new trial.

Rosendorff said at the time “he tried to answer the questions honestly but that the prosecutors tried to make everyone look bad” and now feels like “he had done something wrong”, a September filing on the incident said.

In his court appearance on Monday, Rosendorff said his testimony during the trial was truthful, echoing a sworn declaration he filed with prosecutors after his visit to the home stating he stands by his testimony “in every respect”.

In questioning by US district judge Edward Davila on Monday, Rosendorff said he felt remorseful about the possibility that Holmes’s young child with Evans would be without her mother if Holmes is sentenced to prison. Rosendorff added, without explanation, that “it is my understanding she is pregnant again”, but that information could not be immediately verified.

“I don’t want to help Ms Holmes,” Rosendorff added. “The only person that can help her is herself. She needs to pay her debt to society.”

Holmes gave birth to her first child with Evans in August 2021, weeks before her trial began. Her legal team was relying heavily on Rosendorff’s post-trial action to help the former entrepreneur avoid a prison sentence.

Davila said it was “unusual” for a witness to appear at a defendant’s home after a trial, CNN reported. “I will say I haven’t seen a case where this happened before,” he said, and granted Holmes a hearing to consider the new evidence.

Holmes, 38, is currently out on bail awaiting her sentencing. It is typical for defendants to make motions for a new trial after a guilty verdict, said Neama Rahmani, a former former federal prosecutor and president of West Coast Trial Lawyers.

“Witnesses feel bad all the time when they testify and someone is convicted, and it doesn’t mean it is grounds for a mistrial,” he said. “This is just what good lawyers do when they have lost a case.”

Davila did not make a ruling on the motion on Monday but will do so in the coming week. The judge had already set a new sentencing date for Holmes for 18 November before the Monday hearing began. If the guilty verdict is upheld, she faces 20 years in prison and a fine of $250,000 plus restitution for each count.

Meanwhile her co-conspirator and former romantic partner Sunny Balwani is scheduled to be sentenced on 15 November after he was convicted on all 12 fraud charges brought against him for his role at the company.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.


Kari Paul

The GuardianTramp

Related Content

Article image
Elizabeth Holmes trial: jury to begin deliberations in Theranos founder’s case
Former CEO faces a maximum of 20 years in prison on nine counts of fraud and two counts of conspiracy to commit fraud

Kari Paul in San Jose

18, Dec, 2021 @1:58 AM

Article image
Elizabeth Holmes trial: jury finds Theranos founder guilty on four fraud counts
The jury delivered the verdict after announcing they were deadlocked on three of the 11 charges Holmes faced

Kari Paul

04, Jan, 2022 @10:23 AM

Article image
Elizabeth Holmes trial: former Theranos CEO recounts alleged abuse by her former lover
Holmes said in her fourth day of testimony that Sunny Balwani berated and controlled her to make her more disciplined and focused

Guardian staff and agencies

30, Nov, 2021 @2:51 AM

Article image
Elizabeth Holmes trial: Silicon Valley watches next steps in high-profile case
Experts say the fraud charges could open up tech industry to further scrutiny, making startups tread more carefully

Kari Paul

04, Jan, 2022 @7:30 PM

Article image
Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes again delays start of 11-year prison term
Lawyers for the disgraced entrepreneur told a judge she would not be turning herself in as she is appealing custody ruling

Kari Paul

26, Apr, 2023 @8:15 PM

Article image
Elizabeth Holmes requests new trial, claiming key witness regrets testimony
Filing by ex-Theranos CEO says former lab director has misgivings after saying he had raised concerns about company’s tech

Kari Paul and agencies

06, Sep, 2022 @10:59 PM

Article image
Disgraced Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes' trial could be delayed by pregnancy
Holmes is on trial for allegedly defrauding investors, doctors and patients while at the helm of blood-testing startup

Kari Paul and agencies

13, Mar, 2021 @2:13 AM

Article image
Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes testifies at trial in risky move
The former CEO testified about the early days of setting up her company in surprise decision by her defense team

Kari Paul

20, Nov, 2021 @1:15 AM

Article image
Elizabeth Holmes looms large on first day of Sunny Balwani’s Theranos trial
Prosecutors portray ex-executive as accomplice in a health scam while defense paints picture of well-meaning businessman

Guardian staff and agencies

22, Mar, 2022 @11:11 PM

Article image
Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes charged with criminal fraud
Ramesh Balwani, former president of blood-testing startup, also charged and
pair appear in federal court hours after Holmes quits as CEO

Olivia Solon in San Francisco

15, Jun, 2018 @10:13 PM