Johnny Depp vs. Amber Heard Trial Verdict: What to Know


This Wednesday a jury discovered each Johnny Depp and Amber Heard responsible for defamation however awarded more cash to Depp. The choice follows a extremely publicized trial that came about in Fairfax, Virginia, and spanned a number of weeks.

Depp sued ex-wife Heard for defamation over a 2018 op-ed she wrote for The Washington Post, searching for $50 million in damages. On Wednesday, a jury discovered Depp have been defamed by way of Heard within the piece and awarded him $10 million in compensatory damages and $5 million in punitive damages. A pass judgement on lowered the punitive damages to $350,000, which is the cap in Virginia. 

Heard, who used to be searching for $100 million in a countersuit, used to be awarded $2 million in compensatory damages and no punitive damages. The jury discovered {that a} remark made by way of a former legal professional of Depp’s — one of the crucial 3 statements incorporated in Heard’s countersuit — have been defamatory.

Here’s what else you will have to know in regards to the trial.

Why did Johnny Depp sue Amber Heard?

Heard, 36, is a type and actress who starred in 2018’s Aquaman. She used to be married to Depp, 58, from 2015 to 2016. The pair divorced in August 2016.

In December 2018, Heard wrote an op-ed for The Washington Post titled, “I spoke up in opposition to sexual violence — and confronted our tradition’s wrath. That has to switch.” She stated within the article that she’d transform “a public determine representing home abuse” however did not point out Depp’s identify. 

Depp alleged Heard defamed him within the op-ed. During opening statements, Depp legal professional Benjamin Chew stated Heard’s article obviously referred to Depp, and that Heard’s “false allegations had an important affect on Mr. Depp’s circle of relatives and his talent to paintings within the career he cherished.” 

Benjamin Rottenborn, a legal professional for Heard, stated that the First Amendment protects what she wrote. “The article is not about Johnny Depp,” Rottenborn stated. “The article is in regards to the social trade for which she is advocating and that the First Amendment protects.”

Rottenborn additionally stated proof within the trial would display that Heard did endure home abuse by the hands of Depp, and that it used to be bodily, emotional, verbal and mental. 

Depp used to be confronted with proving that Heard knowingly made false claims. Heard filed a countersuit in opposition to Depp, which used to be determined as a part of the trial. She alleged that Depp defamed her when his former legal professional referred to her allegations of abuse as a hoax.

Johnny Depp on the stand during the trial. As he talks, he holds out his right hand, with fingers spread, as if emphasizing a point.

Depp testifies.

Evelyn Hockstein/Getty Images

Depp misplaced a defamation case that concerned Heard in 2020. He’d sued British tabloid The Sun over a headline calling him a “spouse beater.” Depp filed his present defamation go well with in 2019, the yr after she wrote the op-ed.

What did Heard and Depp say right through testimony within the trial?

When requested in regards to the first time Depp allegedly hit her, Heard described an example when she’d requested Depp about what one in all his tattoos stated, and he’d spoke back “wino.” “I simply laughed as a result of I believed he used to be joking, and he slapped me around the face,” she stated. Heard additionally testified that Depp sexually assaulted her in a while once they have been married.

During his testimony previous within the trial, Depp stated that he by no means struck Heard however that she displayed violence right through their dating. Depp alleged she threw a vodka bottle at his hand right through an issue, chopping off part of his heart finger. 

Heard’s and Depp’s groups delivered their final arguments on May 27. 


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