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A California federal court judge overseeing the case against disgraced Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes has announced that the trial date will be pushed back by several months as the state, and the country, continues to grapple with the coronavirus pandemic.
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U.S. District Court Judge Edward J. Davila, who is presiding over the San Jose-based wire fraud case against Holmes, said in court papers filed late last week that the one-time billionaire’s trial is now expected to begin on July 13, 2021 – four months later than the March date that had previously been set.
“The court has been vigilant in keeping informed as to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic in the nation and the state and in day to day life in the San Francisco bay area,” Davila wrote in court papers filed Dec. 18. “The court notes sadly, the impact on our lives is grim.”
Davila went on to describe how the Golden State is in the midst of “an unprecedented surge in cases and hospitalizations.”
DISGRACED THERANOS FOUNDER ELIZABETH HOLMES HOPING TO KEEP 'WEALTH, SPENDING AND LIFESTYLE' OUT OF UPCOMING FRAUD TRIAL
As of Thursday morning, the United States had reported at least 18,495,851 COVID-19 cases and 326,871 deaths, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University & Medicine.
California has reported the highest number of cases with 2,010,485 positive COVID-19 tests reported; 23,660 Californians have died, data show.
Davila acknowledged the importance of Holmes’s trial, but that the risk was too great.
“The court recognizes that a continuance of the trial will cause great inconvenience to victims who would like their day in court, as well as defendant, who wishes a speedy opportunity to defend against the charges,” he wrote. “All of these rights are important, but paramount to the court is the safety and health of the community.”