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Eric Havian Discusses Beginning of Theranos Trial on Talking Feds Podcast: Listen Here

Posted  September 15, 2021

Our very own Harry Litman, host of the Talking Feds podcast which brings together former government officials, recently welcomed Constantine Cannon Whistleblower partner Eric Havian to discuss the trial of Theranos founder and former CEO Elizabeth Holmes. While this Talking Feds podcast would ordinarily be available only through Patreon, we have made it available to you below.

Ms. Holmes is charged with 12 counts of fraud and wire fraud in connection with Theranos, which claimed to have developed a blood analysis device that required only a finger prick sized sample of blood. As it turned out, the technology behind Theranos did not work, a truth that was made public largely through the efforts of whistleblowers including Tyler Shultz and Erika Cheung (Mr. Shultz was subsequently represented by Constantine Cannon).

Havian, who previously worked as an Assistant United States Attorney in the Northern District of California, noted that Elizabeth Holmes is putting forward a classic “point the finger at the guy who isn’t there” defense by alleging that her former business partner, and former boyfriend, Ramesh Balwani, abused her during their relationship, and that, as a result, she did not really know what was going on in the company.

Given the nature of her defense, and her apparent belief that she can charm anyone, which she did do for several years, Havian believes that she is likely to take the stand to testify, though the defense has not yet stated that she will.  Alternatively, Holmes could present evidence of the alleged abuse through a psychologist – and there is a psychologist on the defense witness list.

During the podcast, Havian also discussed Constantine Cannon client Tyler Shultz, noting that Mr. Shultz tried to confront Ms. Holmes and raise concerns over what he was seeing in the lab. Apparently, upon hearing about the confrontation, Mr. Balwani told Mr. Shultz that he “would have fired” him if he were not related to George Shultz, the former Secretary of State and an early backer of the company. Shortly thereafter, Mr. Shultz quit and publicly revealed his allegations of massive fraud at Theranos.

Mr. Litman noted that the trial is likely to go several weeks and invited Mr. Havian back for a check-in as the trial proceeds. Stay tuned for more insight from Mr. Havian and the Talking Feds podcast.

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Tagged in: CC Lawyers, Financial and Investment Fraud, Importance of Whistleblowers,