Elizabeth Holmes drawn as villain, underdog as trial begins

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SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) — Prosecutors and defense attorneys sketched dueling portraits of fallen Silicon Valley star Elizabeth Holmes as her trial got underway Wednesday, alternatively describing her as a greedy villain who faked her way to the top and as a passionate underdog whose spent years trying to shake up the health care industry.
FILE - In this Nov. 2, 2015, file photo, Elizabeth Holmes, founder and CEO of Theranos, speaks at the Fortune Global Forum in San Francisco. Just six years ago, Holmes seemed destined to fulfill her dream of becoming Silicon Valley's next superstar. Now she is about to head into a San Jose, Calif., courtroom to defend herself against criminal allegations depicting her as the devious mastermind of a fraud that duped wealthy investors, former U.S. government officials and patients whose lives were endangered by a blood-testing technology that never came close to fulfilling her bold promises. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu, File)

FILE - In this Nov. 2, 2015, file photo, Elizabeth Holmes, founder and CEO of Theranos, speaks at the Fortune Global Forum in San Francisco. Just six years ago, Holmes seemed destined to fulfill her dream of becoming Silicon Valley's next superstar. Now she is about to head into a San Jose, Calif., courtroom to defend herself against criminal allegations depicting her as the devious mastermind of a fraud that duped wealthy investors, former U.S. government officials and patients whose lives were endangered by a blood-testing technology that never came close to fulfilling her bold promises. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu, File)



The two sides are now expected to spend the next three months trying to sway a 12-person jury impaneled to hearing the evidence in a case airing allegations that Holmes used her startup, Theranos, as a scheme to realize her dreams of becoming rich and as famous as one of her role models, late Apple co-founder Steve Jobs.

Once hailed as a billionaire on paper, Holmes is now facing a sentence of up to 20 years if convicted of the felony charges.

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Holmes' rise and fall has already been the subject of documentaries, books and podcasts, feeding the fervor that has built up around a trial that has been delayed twice since she was indicted nearly three years ago. With roughly only 75 spots available for the media and general…
Michael Liedtke
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