Lawyer Monthly - February 2022

MONTHLY ROUND-UP The US Supreme Court has blocked President Biden’s coronavirus vaccination-or-testing mandate for large businesses. Following a landmark trial that began in late August, Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes has been convicted of defrauding investors. ELIZABETHHOLMES TRIAL: THERANOS FOUNDER CONVICTEDOF FRAUD Prosecutors said that the founder of the nowdefunct medical startup had knowingly lied about Theranos’ technology, which she claimed could detect diseases with just a few drops of blood. The jury found Holmes guilty of four charges, including conspiracy to commit fraud against investors, and three counts of wire fraud. In total, Holmes faced 11 charges but was found not guilty of four charges relating to defrauding the public. She denied the charges, each carrying a maximum prison term of 20 years. Founded in 2003, Theranos had promised to revolutionise the healthcare industry and, at one point, reached a valuation of $9 billion. However, the company’s claims quickly began to fall apart after a 2015 Wall Street Journal investigation reported that Theranos had been widely overstating the capabilities of its blood-testing technology. Holmes is due to be sentenced on 26 September. LM SUPREME COURT BLOCKS BIDEN’S VACCINE MANDATE FOR LARGE BUSINESSES Biden voiced his disappointment with the conservative-majority court’s decision to halt the rule requiring vaccines or weekly coronavirus tests for staff at businesses with 100 or more employees. In a statement, Biden said it is now up to states and employers to decide whether or not to make vaccination mandatory. The Supreme Court ruled 6-3 in blocking the rule for large businesses, a policy that would have applied to over 80 million employers across the nation. The court’s majority downplayed the threat of coronavirus, particularly in the workplace. They compared it to “day-to-day” crime and pollution hazards that individuals constantly face. Meanwhile, the court supported a separate federal vaccine requirement for healthcare facilities, such as hospitals and nursing homes, voting 5-4 to allow the rule. This makes vaccination against coronavirus mandatory for approximately 10.3 million workers at 76,000 healthcare facilities that accept funds from the Medicare and Medicaid government health insurance programmes. LM 7 FEB 2022 | WWW.LAWYER-MONTHLY.COM

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