Before handing down the sentence, Davila called the case “troubling on so many levels,” questioning what motivated Holmes, a “brilliant” entrepreneur, to misrepresent her company to investors.
“This is a fraud case where an exciting venture went forward with great expectations only to be dashed by untruths, misrepresentations, plain hubris and lies,” the judge said.
Holmes, dressed in a dark blouse and black skirt, hugged her parents and her partner after the sentence was handed down.
Prosecutors said during the trial that Holmes misrepresented Theranos’ technology and finances, including by claiming that its miniaturized blood testing machine was able to run an array of tests from a few drops of blood. The company secretly relied on conventional machines from other companies to run patients’ tests, prosecutors said.
Holmes testified in her own defense, saying she believed her statements were accurate at the time.
She was convicted on four counts but acquitted on four other counts alleging she defrauded patients who paid for Theranos tests.
Theranos Inc promised to revolutionize how patients receive diagnoses by replacing traditional labs with small machines envisioned for use in homes, drugstores and even on the battlefield.
Forbes dubbed Holmes the world’s youngest female self-made billionaire in 2014, when she was 30 and her stake in Theranos was worth $4.5 billion. Theranos collapsed after a series of Wall Street Journal articles in 2015 questioned its technology.
Actress Amanda Seyfried in September won an Emmy Award for portraying Holmes in the limited series “The Dropout.”