Johnny Depp vs Amber Heard: Know Why Aquaman Star Was Awarded USD 2 Million in Defamation Trial

In what came up as a sigh of relief for Johnny Depp fans, the Pirates of the Caribbean actor won the defamation case against Amber Heard on Tuesday, with the jury awarding Johnny more than USD 10 million and his ex-wife USD 2 million. All eyes were on Johnny and Depp as the six-week trial featured explicit and graphic evidence and testimony detailing the former Hollywood couple’s soured relationship.

The case was over a suit filed by Depp against Heard over a December 2018 op-ed she wrote in The Washington Post describing herself as “a public figure representing domestic abuse”. Although the op-ed did not mention Depp, he said that it pointed towards him and had hurt his career.

The trial ended when the seven-member jury at the Fairfax County Court in Virginia, US, said Depp should receive USD 10 million in compensatory damages and USD 5 million in punitive damages. However, the state law caps the amount for punitive damages at USD 350,000, meaning Depp was awarded a total of USD 10.35 million.

Interestingly, the Aquaman star has also been awarded an amount of 2 Million USD. The jury of the Virginia court found Amber Heard’s article defamatory towards Johnny Depp, and it also determined that Heard had been defamed by one of Depp’s lawyers, who said she had created a detailed hoax that included roughing up the couple’s apartment to look worse for police. The jury awarded her USD 2 million.

The jurors closely inspected the three statements, in particular made by a lawyer appearing on behalf of Depp. The lawyer had said that Amber Heard and friends “spilled a little wine and roughed the place up, got their stories straight and called police”.

Heard, who sat silently in the court as the verdict was being delivered, said she was “heartbroken”.

“I’m even more disappointed with what this verdict means for other women. It’s a setback. It sets back the clock to a time when a woman who spoke up and spoke out could be publicly humiliated. It sets back the idea that violence against women is to be taken seriously,” she said in a statement posted on her Twitter account.

On Wednesday, Depp, who did not attend the session, said in a statement that he posted on Instagram, “The jury gave me my life back. I am truly humbled. I hope that my quest to have the truth be told will have helped others, men or women, who have found themselves in my situation, and that those supporting them never give up.”

(With inputs from AP)

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