The jury has ruled in favor of Johnny Depp in the libel suit he brought against his ex-wife Amber Heard. The court awarded Depp €15 million in damages. The actor was not present at the verdict, Heard was. “The disappointment I feel today cannot be expressed in words,” said the actress.
Mark den Blanken
The jury, consisting of five men and two women, unanimously ruled in favor of Johnny Depp. The jury found that Heard’s 2018 op-ed, in which she called him a sexual abuser, was defamation. Furthermore, they found Heard’s allegations in the Washington Post malicious. The jury awarded Depp $10 million in damages and $5 million in criminal costs for the lawsuit. But that amounts to a maximum of $350,000 in the state of Virginia, where the lawsuit took place. The amount is significantly lower than the $50 million that the actor had demanded. Heard wanted to see $100 million from her ex.
Jury awards Heard $2 million in damages in her lawsuit against ex-husband Johnny Depp, who was also found guilty of defamation. This is because he had previously called her allegations of abuse ‘a hoax’.
The goal was to bring the truth to light, whatever the outcome
Depp says in response to the won libel case against American media that he has been given his life back by the jury. “Six years ago, my life, the lives of my children, the lives of my loved ones and the lives of people who have supported and believed in me for many years have changed forever,” Depp said, referring to the start of the allegations. of assault by his ex-wife. “False, very serious and criminal allegations were made against me through the media and that caused a flood of hate messages, although no charges were ever brought against me. Within a nanosecond, the story had already gone around the world twice and had a seismic impact on my life and career.”
The 56-year-old actor is happy that he has filed a libel suit after Heard’s article in 2018 about her experiences with domestic violence. “The aim was to bring the truth to light, whatever the outcome. Telling the truth was something I owed to my children and everyone who has continued to support me. I feel calm now that I know I have finally achieved that.”
The judgment has seriously affected Heard. “I feel broken because the huge mountain of evidence was not enough to withstand the power and influence of my ex-husband,” said the actress. “I think it’s even worse when I think about what this judgment means for other women. It’s a setback. We are going back to a time when a woman who speaks out can be publicly pilloried and humiliated.”
The verdicts put an end to a televised trial that Depp had hoped would help restore his reputation. However, it became a major media spectacle full of scandals. The lawsuit between Hollywood stars Johnny Depp and Amber Heard revolved around an essay the actress wrote in 2018 for The Washington Postas a victim of domestic violence. She does not mention Depp, with whom she had a relationship between 2011 and 2015, by name in the piece, but according to the actor it is very clear that it was about him. “I have the right to tell my story. Johnny had deprived me of my voice long enough,” Heard said in court.
Her claims were pure slander, Depp argued, as he denied ever assaulting her. Hollywood doesn’t want him now, the actor complained. He therefore demanded $50 million in damages from Heard. The actress then also accused her ex of defamation because of his allegations against her – she allegedly lied and assaulted him – and demanded 100 million dollars.
The judges received more than 100 hours of testimonials from doctors, psychologists, security guards and friends, all the way down to top model Kate Moss, who had a relationship with Depp in the 90s. They saw pictures of Heard’s bruises and Depp’s bloodied finger – he said she threw a vodka bottle at him and he lost the tip of his finger, she claimed he cut the tip off himself and then texts on the walls calcified with his own blood. Then, she said, he abused her with a liquor bottle. Another bizarre story: the morning after an argument he found a turd in bed, hers. She denied: it was the dog that would have eaten his weed. They accuse each other of alcohol and drug abuse.
The verdicts were to be read in the Virginia court at 9 p.m. tonight. But the judge sent the jury back for failing to complete the form. The entire statement followed later.
There was plenty of mud thrown during the trial:
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