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Johnny Depp v Amber Heard trial summary 2 June 2022

Update:
The latest news and updates after a Virginia jury ruled that Amber Heard defamed Johnny Depp in a 2018 Washington Post op-ed, awarding the actor $15m.

Depp v Heard latest news: live reactions to verdict

Depp v Heard verdict: watch as it happened

The video below offers courtroom footage of Wednesday's verdict in Fairfax, Virginia, as a seven-person jury found mostly in favour of Johnny Depp in his $50m defamation case against Amber Heard.

They awarded Depp $15 million in compensation, which was then reduced to $10.35m by Judge Penny Azcarate, who cited a limit to punitive damages in Virginia state law.

Heard, who was counter-suing Depp for $100m, was successful on one count of defamation and was awarded $2 million. Heard's lawyer has spoken publicly about her client's intention to appeal the verdict. 

Both Depp and Heard have responded to the verdict on social media and it has become increasingly clear that much of what transpired in the courtroom only represented a fraction of the complexities of the case and their relationship. 

Watch Wednesday's courtroom action:

Can Amber Heard afford to pay Johnny Depp after the trial? Will she appeal?

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Can Amber Heard afford to pay Johnny Depp after the trial? Will she appeal?

The jury in the defamation case brought by Johnny Depp against Amber Heard for an opinion piece she published in The Washington Post has ended. The court has ordered Amber Heard to pay $10.35 million in damages while also requiring Depp to pay $2 million to Heard for articles written by his publicist in The Daily Mail.

In response to questions from the media over whether Heard is in a position to make these payments to Depp, her attorney, Elaine Charlson Bredehoft, answered, “Oh, no. Absolutely not.”

Read our full coverage for details on what options Amber Heard has moving forward. 

Amber Heard releases statement on the trial's verdict

Actress Amber Heard has also released a response to the trial verdict where she has been ordered to pay more than $10 million to Depp. Heard spoke to her concerns that this case may be a "step backwards" for other women who have been the victims of abuse and want to speak out against their abuser or their experience.  

Johnny Depp releases response to trial verdict

After the trial ended on Wednesday 1 June, Johnny Depp took to Instagram to thank the jury and discuss his happiness with the result. The post has been liked by many celebrities and currently has attracted more than fifteen million likes. 

What did Johnny Depp say after the verdict in the trial against Amber Heard? Full statement

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What did Johnny Depp say after the verdict in the trial against Amber Heard? Full statement

After weeks of the highly watched defamation case between Johnny Depp and Amber Heard came to end, many following online are still unsure of what actually occurred between the cover.

The jury came to a decision that Depp’s lawyers prove defamation claims and the court has ordered Heard to pay $15 million to Depp. However, on one count, Depp will owe Heard $2 million for defaming her throughout the process.

Read our full coverage for details on how both parties responded to the verdict. 

Heard

Amber Heard plans to appeal ruling

Amber Heard will appeal a jury's decision that she defamed ex-husband Johnny Depp when she claimed she was a survivor of sexual violence, her attorney said on Thursday.

A seven-person jury in Virginia ruled on Wednesday that Heard defamed the "Pirates of the Caribbean" star and awarded him $10.35 million in damages. The jury also determined that Heard was defamed, awarding her $2 million.

Elaine Charlson Bredehoft, one of Heard's attorneys, said on NBC's "Today" show that Depp's team was "able to suppress an enormous amount of evidence" that was allowed in a libel case in Britain, which Depp lost.

"She was demonized here," Bredehoft added. "A number of things were allowed in this court that should not have been allowed, and it caused the jury to be confused."

During the trial, Depp said he never hit or sexually abused Heard and argued that she was one who became violent during their relationship. Heard said she slapped Depp but only in defense of herself or her sister.

FILE PHOTO: Amber Heard leaves Fairfax County Circuit Courthouse after the jury announced split verdicts  in the Depp v. Heard civil defamation trial at the Fairfax County Circuit Courthouse in Fairfax, Virginia, U.S., June 1, 2022. REUTERS/Tom Brenner/File Photo

Heard can't afford to pay Depp the 10.4 million dollars claims her lawyer

Actress Amber Heard cannot pay her ex-husband and colleague Johnny Depp the more than $10 million in damages imposed by a U.S. jury that ultimately went for the "Pirates of the Caribbean" star's version in a defamation trial, her lawyer said Thursday.

The jury ordered Heard to pay her ex-partner $10.35 million in damages, while Depp will have to pay the actress $2 million in damages.

Asked on NBC's "TODAY" show if Heard will be able to pay the damages, her lawyer, Elaine Bredehoft, replied: "Oh no, absolutely not".

She added that Heard intends to appeal the verdict.

Depp, 58, who had already lost a defamation case in 2020 in the U.K. against London tabloid The Sun for calling him a "wife beater," celebrated the verdict in the case as a victory, while Heard said she was "heartbroken."

The actor sued his ex-wife over an op-ed he wrote for The Washington Post in December 2018 that described her as a "public figure who represents domestic abuse."

How much does Heard have to pay Depp and why?

A verdict has been returned in the high-profile court case between Johnny Depp and Amber Heard, with the jury finding that Depp was unfairly defamed by Heard in an op-ed in The Washington Post. However, they did find in favour of Heard on one count filed by her legal team.

The jury found in favour of Depp on two counts, and awarded him compensatory payments of $10 million and $5 million. Heard has been awarded $2 million in compensation for the upheld claim.

Read more

Depp

Johnny Depp arriving at the Sage Gateshead concert venue in Gateshead, North-East England, where he is due to join Jeff Beck on stage on Thursday.

See also: Johnny Depp appears on stage with Jeff Beck

(Photo: Owen Humphreys/PA Images via Getty Images)

Key moments from the Amber Heard vs Johnny Depp trial

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Key moments from the Amber Heard vs Johnny Depp trial

Following closing arguments at the end of last week, AS USA's Jennifer Bubel put together a video of some of the key moments of the Depp v Heard trial.

Johnny Depp’s net worth: how much money has the actor made?

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Johnny Depp’s net worth: how much money has the actor made?

Following the news that he has been awarded multi-million-dollar damages in his defamation case against Amber Heard, AS USA's Will Gittins looks at where this leaves Johnny Depp's net worth.

Heard "demonised" in defamation trial, lawyer says

Amber Heard’s lawyer Elaine Bredehoft says Johnny Depp won out because because his legal team “demonised” her client and suppressed “an enormous amount of evidence”.

Bredehoft told an interview with NBC’s Today show that Depp’s lawyers used the experience of defeat in the actor’s libel battle against The Sun in the UK to shape a clear strategy in the US trial.

“What did Depp’s team learn from [the UK defeat]? Demonise Amber and suppress the evidence. We had an enormous amount of evidence that was suppressed in this case that was in the UK case. In the UK case, when it came in, Amber won, Mr Depp lost.”

Bredehoft continued: “They were able to suppress the medical records, which were very, very significant, because they showed a pattern going all the way back to 2012, of Amber reporting [abuse] to her therapist, for example. We had a significant amount of texts, including from Mr Depp’s assistants, saying, ‘When I told him he kicked you, he cried.’ That didn’t come in.”

Told by Today host Savannah Guthrie that the jury seemingly “did not believe a single word” that Heard said, Bredehoft replied: “That’s because she was demonised here. A number of things were allowed in this court that should not have been allowed. And it caused the jury to be confused.”

Another recommended podcast on Depp v Heard

Another show we'd like to recommend that has been covering the Depp v Heard trial is the Law & Crime Sidebar podcast, whose legal experts have offered real insight in their assessment of every day's proceedings at Fairfax County Court.

Check out the podcast

The reaction from 'Reporting: Depp v Heard'

UK journalist Nick Wallis, who covered the trial throughout, has been recording daily recap, analysis and reaction shows since day one in Fairfax County. In this final YouTube video, Wallis offers his thoughts on the verdict, and gets the reactions of other observers at the courthouse.

Wallis' recap shows are also available in podcast format.

Amber Heard’s statement after her loss in the trial: what did she say about Johnny Depp?

Amber Heard’s statement after her loss in the trial: what did she say about Johnny Depp?

Here is our full report, courtesy of AS USA's Oli Povey, on the statement Amber Heard released following Wednesday's verdict.

Amber Heard net worth: how much money has the actress made?

LATEST NEWS

Amber Heard net worth: how much money has the actress made?

After she was ordered to pay former husband Johnny Depp damages of $15m (subsequently reduced to $10.35m by the judge), AS USA's Jeffrey May takes a look at Amber Heard's total worth.

Depp v Heard trial "an orgy of misogyny" - Guardian columnist Donegan

In a piece in the Guardian, the columnist Moira Donegan has branded the Depp v Heard trial a “public orgy of misogyny”, writing: “The strange, illogical, and unjust ruling has the effect of sanctioning Depp’s alleged abuse of Heard, and of punishing Heard for speaking about it. It will have a devastating effect on survivors, who will be silenced, now, with the knowledge that they cannot speak about their violent experiences at men’s hands without the threat of a ruinous libel suit. In that sense, women’s speech just became a lot less free.”

Read Moira Donegan’s column in full

"I think this is an inconsistent verdict": Heard will likely appeal, expert tells BBC

Lawyer Lisa Bloom says she believes the Depp v Heard case is far from over, telling BBC Newsnight that she expects Amber Heard to appeal against what Bloom described as an "inconsistent" verdict.

I want to emphasise that this is not the end, because most defamation cases are really decided on appeal,” Bloom told BBC Newsnight. “I have handled a number of defamation cases, including representing Janice Dickinson against Bill Cosby. We had to argue two appeals in that case, both of which were successful.

And I think there are a lot of issues on appeal. For example, I think this is an inconsistent verdict. How can it be that Amber Heard was defamed when Johnny Depp’s lawyer said that her allegations were a hoax, and yet Johnny Depp was also defamed when she said she was representative of domestic violence. I think that’s inconsistent, and you can’t have an inconsistent verdict.

She also got hit with the defamation verdict for the headline in the article, which she did not write. Now, she retweeted it, but she didn’t write it. I retweet articles all the time. Am I responsible if there’s a false statement within that article? Generally, we think people are not responsible for that.

“So I think this is going to go up on appeal, I think that within a year or two we’re going to have a more definitive answer and outcome in this case.”

Heard

Amber Heard reacts with lawyers Elaine Bredehoft (left) and Ben Rottenborn (right) after Wednesday's verdict at Fairfax County Court.

(Photo: REUTERS/Evelyn Hockstein/Pool)

Can Amber Heard appeal the jury verdict?

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Can Amber Heard appeal the jury verdict?

AS USA's Paul Reidy looks at Amber Heard's appeal prospects after losing out in court to Johnny Depp.

Heard “heartbroken” at verdict

Amber Heard also released a statement after the verdict, writing: “The disappointment I feel today is beyond words. I’m heartbroken that the mountain of evidence still was not enough to stand up to the disproportionate power, influence, and sway of my ex-husband.”

Heard added: “I’m even more disappointed with what this verdict means for other women. It is a setback. It sets back the clock to a time when a woman who spoke up and spoke out could be publicly shamed and humiliated. It sets back the idea that violence against women is to be taken seriously.”

Heard's full statement:

Jury “gave me my life back”, says “humbled” Depp

In a statement released after the verdict, Depp said the seven-person jury in his defamation case against Heard “gave me my life back”, adding: “I am truly humbled.”

From the beginning, the goal of bringing this case was to reveal the truth, regardless of the outcome,” Depp continued. “Speaking the truth was something that I owed to my children and to all those who have remained steadfast in their support of me. I feel at peace knowing I have finally accomplished that.”

Depp's full statement:

Heard

Heard did win on one count of defamation in her $100m counter-suit, which argued that she was defamed when Depp's press agent, Adam Waldman, publicly accused her of launching an "abuse hoax".

Heard was awarded $2m in damages.

(Photo: REUTERS/Tom Brenner/File Photo)

Depp awarded $15 million, judge reduces damages to $10.35m

Johnny Depp was awarded $15 million in damages after the jury at Fairfax County Court deemed that  Amber Heard defamed her former husband in a 2018 Washington Post op-ed entitled: "I spoke up against sexual violence — and faced our culture’s wrath. That has to change."

In the op-ed, which didn't mention Depp by name, Heard wrote that she had become a "public figure representing domestic abuse".

Following the jury's decision to award Depp $15m, Judge Penny Azcarate reduced this amount to $10.35m, citing limits to damages in Virginia state law.

Depp v Heard live updates: welcome

Good morning and welcome to AS USA's daily live blog on the Johnny Depp v Amber Heard defamation case. A verdict was reached on Wednesday, the seven-person jury in Fairfax, Virginia, ruling mostly in favour of Depp.

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