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Johnny Depp, Amber Heard defamation controversy explained

Johnny Depp won a high bar in his defamation lawsuit against his ex-partner Amber Heard as a public figure. According to seven unanimous jurors, he earned this victory. Depp said his ex-wife slandered his big name in the 2018 newspaper op-ed in which she inferred abuse allegations against Johnny Depp. His name was never cited. Although the Virginia civil jury supervised the case in favor of Depp on all three counts on Wednesday, they found out that Heard had not only made untrue and defamatory statements against her ex-husband but also that she’d done so with “actual malice,” which is a higher verge for domestic violence cases involving public figures and celebrities. The Jury terminated the matter by stating that Depp should receive more than $10 million. 

But Depp’s victory was not unconditional. The Jurors even concluded the part that had Heard’s counterclaims and gave her merits. They deserted two of Heard’s three enumerations but found out that she was defamed by a Depp lawyer who indecently accused her of roughing up their apartment to look worse for the police. Hence, the Jury awarded her $2 million. 

First count against Amber 

Jurors assessed whether Depp was slandered by the online headline of the opposite editorial in The Washington Post, stating, “I spoke up against sexual violence and faced our culture’s wrath. That has to change.” The court decided that Heard was responsible for publishing the headline that led to the superstar’s defamation. 

Second count against Amber 

Jurors believed that the op-ed’s third paragraph was, “Then two years ago, I became a public figure representing domestic abuse, and I felt the full force of our culture’s wrath for women who speak out” considerably. Depp’s attorneys said it referred to Depp, given that Heard publicly charged him with domestic violence in 2016. Heard’s lawyers said a peak of proof showed Heard was abused innumerable times and that just one instance of verified abuse would make the line not defamatory. They also claimed that the statement was objectively true because it was focused not on Depp but Heard’s experience. The court rejected this statement finding it defamatory. 

 Third count against Amber

 In the second passage in the op-ed, Heard reported, “I had the rare vantage point of seeing, in real-time, how institutions protect men accused of abuse.” Depp’s attorneys again expressed that it clearly pointed out Depp in public. And, as with the other two enumerations, the jurors found out that Heard had defamed Depp with false claims as there has been clear and convincing proof that Heard either knew it was false or acted irresponsibly disregarding the truth. 

 First count against Depp 

 Amber Heard was taken up with the three counts of defamation against Depp, saying she’d been repeatedly maligned by his former lawyer Adam Waldman, who called Heard’s vitriol allegations a hoax. Heard said the comments were bad for her profession. Jurors considered a proclamation from Waldman that appeared on The Daily Mail’s website on April 8, 2020, and stated, “Amber Heard and her friends in the media use fake sexual-violence allegations as both a sword and shield depending on their needs. Unfortunately, they have selected some of her sexual-violence hoax ‘facts’ as the sword, inflicting them on the public and Mr. Depp.” 

The case concluded that Heard’s side did not have enough evidence to support their claim. 

 Second count against Depp 

 Heard pitched her only victory when a statement was handed to The Daily Mail by Depp’s former attorney Waldman. He accused Heard and her friends of fabricating abuse allegations following a 2016 fight in the couple’s Hollywood penthouse that provoked Heard to call the police. The two cops testified against Heard, stating that there were no physical injury marks on the former’s face, although later that week, she was seen with scars on her face. The statement by Waldman was untrue, and the jury members agreed with it. 

 Third count against Depp 

 The final count was considered from the statement that stated that it was the end of Amber Heard’s abuse against Johnny Depp. The court decided it wasn’t defamatory, and neither Heard’s attorney mentioned it was. 

 Therefore, the knockout judgement by the Jury on 2nd June, Thursday, Johnny Depp and Amber Heard’s defamation trial has concluded that Depp should receive $10 million for his defamation case victory, and Heard will end up with $2 million, further exiting the court. 


By TIS Staffer
the authorBy TIS Staffer

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