Amber Heard calls for retrial for libel against Johnny Depp after losing multimillion-dollar case for defamation | Ents & art news

Amber Heard has asked a Virginia judge to quash her losing verdict against Johnny Depp and order a new lawsuit, alleging that the verdict was not supported by evidence at trial.

Lawyers for the 36-year-old Aquaman star drafted a 43-page movement, claiming that depp “continued solely on a theory of defamation by implication, abandoning all claims that Ms. Heard’s statements were factually false.”

The verdict called it “excessive” and the document continued: “Mrs. Heard respectfully requests this court to quash the jury verdict in favor of Mr. Depp and against Ms. Heard in its entirety, dismiss the complaint or, in the alternative, order a new process.”

The trial ended on June 1, with the jury ruling that a 2018 article Heard wrote for The Washington Postabout her alleged experiences as a survivor of domestic violence, was defamatory towards 59-year-old Depp.

Johnny Depp said he bought the case to ‘reveal the truth’

The jury of five men and two women came to a unanimous verdict, saying that Depp had proved all elements of defamation.

They also found that most of Heard’s allegations were false and felt they conveyed a defamatory implication.

Depp, who sued Heard for $50 million (£38.2 million), was awarded $10.35 million (£8.2 million) in damages, an amount Heard’s lawyer Elaine Bredehoft “definitely couldn’t afford”, and in the file called the amount “indefensible”.

The amount was subsequently reduced by Judge Penney Azcarate to $350,000 (£293,000) under a state cap.

Heard, who sued the Pirates Of The Caribbean star for $100 million (£76.4 million), won on one point and successfully argued that one of Depp’s lawyers defamed her by claiming her allegations were “a hoax of abuse.” “, aimed at capitalizing on the #MeToo movement.

The jury awarded her $2 million (£1.5 million) in damages.

Amber Heard and Johnny Depp photographed in January 2016, just a few months before their split.  Photo: AP
Heard and Depp photographed in January 2016, just a few months before their split. Photo: AP

Read more: Depp v Heard: Key Evidence from Six-Week ‘Soap Opera’ Lawsuit

The motion also asked about “inconsistencies” in a juror’s registered age, citing “potentially inappropriate jury service.”

Jury member 15 was registered as born in 1945, according to the documents filed, but Heard’s attorneys say “publicly available information shows he appears to have been born in 1970.”

Heard’s appeal also alleges that the jury did not have sufficient evidence to reason that Depp lost film roles after her op-ed.

During the trial, the jury was told it was due to Heard’s Washington Post article that Depp had not been asked to reprise his role as Jack Sparrow in the sixth entry in the Pirates Of The Caribbean franchise.

Judge Penney Azcarate presides over Johnny Depp's lawsuit against Amber Heard for defamation
Judge Penney Azcarate presided over the trial, which took place in Fairfax County Court, Virginia

Responding to Heard’s calls to overturn the verdict, Depp’s attorneys said the motion was “what we expected, just longer. [and] no longer substantive”.

At the time of the verdict in June, Depp’s legal team said they were immensely grateful to the jury and that it was a victory for “truth and justice”.

Depp said he felt “calm” and “really humiliated” after winning the lawsuit, adding that his decision to pursue the case was “made only after much consideration” and that his goal was “to tell the truth.” reveal regardless of the outcome”.

However, after appearing in court for all the evidence, Depp was not there for the verdict, instead touring the UK with musician Jeff Beck

Read more: Depp v Heard: How did online abuse of Amber Heard become acceptable?

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Heard ‘fear more libel cases from Depp’

Heard has said she was “disappointed” by the outcome, calling it a “setback” for all women.

Her lawyers previously promised she would appeal the decision, saying she had “excellent reasons” for doing so, as there was “so much” evidence that was not included in the trial.

Heard’s lawyer also said she could “definitely not” afford to pay the $10.35 million originally awarded to Depp.

Judge Azcarate has said Heard must issue $8.35 million (£7 million) bail before an appeal can be filed.

The original trial lasted six weeks and appealed to multiple witnesses, experts, and testimony from Depp and Heard themselves.

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