Elizabeth Holmes’ defense rests after FBI agent testifies at Theranos trial

Medical devices billionaire’s defense rested its case on Wednesday as the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s star witness returned to stand and testified that he was placed in a “penal induction class” with hundreds of convicted felons at the heart of his California mansion.

Mai Carr, also known as witness 205, the first of two FBI agents who worked the fraud case against Elizabeth Holmes and her company Theranos, testified that she was driven to help the agency’s investigation, testifying for hours as Holmes listened in court.

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“I felt a moral obligation to speak out and call them on it,” Carr said of the role she played as a research and development director for the FBI’s San Francisco office.

Carr has been an integral part of the case against Holmes and Theranos. She was a field supervisor in the San Francisco office investigating the company when the company falsely claimed to be a medical device company that could collect blood from its patients. Agents had to adjust their investigatory methods when they arrived at Holmes’ mansion.

“We were disappointed with the ability to conduct the ballistics,” Carr said when asked why the FBI’s resources were not deployed to test the ingredients of Theranos’ diagnostic test. “The reliance on urine and our field verification efforts would have been cheaper.”

Carr also testified on Wednesday that there was evidence suggesting Holmes, though well educated, had not been tested to see if she was qualified to test the company’s blood-testing kit.

Theranos argued at trial that its main assets were Holmes’ charms as a child and the saving grace of her grandfather, her father, who had initially encouraged her to learn how to develop technology in his lab.

“He thought she would be a great scientist. She was bright,” her father, Rex Holmes, said at trial.

Holmes herself described the Sherlock Holmes-themed Victorian mansion as a “family library”.

“If Holmes were to be found in an English library, she would be surrounded by shelves of over 1,000 books, many of which contain extractable gems,” Gil Schwartz, a convicted felon and trusted jailhouse ally for the defense, testified earlier this week.

Carr testified that Holmes sent Carr and the then-partner of the defense, David Beard, to her childhood home in California’s Carmel Valley at the end of 2015. While there, Carr revealed Holmes ordered a large number of garbage bags with razor blades.

“She never threw anything out,” Carr said. “She just took plastic bags from the garage, folded them up and placed them into the garbage bags.”

Her testimony came after McCarthy, Holmes’ personal physician, spent nearly a week on the stand about the efficacy of Theranos’ blood-testing devices. McCarthy, a former director of the US Defense Department’s diabetes division, also revealed Holmes’ typically stubborn style, with many sentences delivered slowly, implying she was reading without listening, but her demeanor remained positive.

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