A Virginia jury on Wednesday (June 1) ruled that actor Amber Heard defamed ex-husband Johnny Depp in a widely watched six-week trial that featured explicit and graphic evidence and testimony detailing the former Hollywood couple’s soured relationship.
The seven-person jury also ruled in favor of Heard in some aspects of her counter-suit against Depp.
Jurors awarded Depp $15 million in damages from Heard. The panel awarded Heard $2 million in damages.
Depp, the 58-year-old “Pirates of the Caribbean” star, sued Heard for $50 million and argued that she defamed him when she called herself “a public figure representing domestic abuse” in a newspaper opinion piece.
Heard, 36, countersued for $100 million, saying Depp smeared her when his lawyer called her accusations a “hoax.”
Depp has denied hitting Heard or any woman and said she was the one who turned violent in their relationship.
Depp and Heard met in 2011 while filming “The Rum Diary” and wed in February 2015. Their divorce was finalized about two years later.
At the center of the legal case is a December 2018 opinion piece by Heard in the Washington Post in which she made the statement about domestic abuse. The article did not mention Depp by name but his lawyer told jurors it was clear that Heard was referring to him.
(Production: Njuwa Maina)