Johnny Depp won his defamation lawsuit against ex-wife Amber Heard, a Virginia jury decided Wednesday. The jury awarded Depp $10 million in compensatory damages and $5 million in punitive damages in the trial. He had sued her for $50 million, and she'd countersued for $100 million.
The jury found that Depp's attorney Adam Waldman defamed Heard when he told a tabloid that she and her friends created a hoax that included roughing up her apartment to look worse for police. In Heard's countersuit, the jury awarded $2 million in compensatory damages.
"False, very severe, and criminal allegations were made against me in the media, resulting in a never-ending flood of nasty information, despite the fact that no charges were ever filed against me." In a nanosecond, it had already moved around the world twice, and it had a seismic influence on my life and profession," he said. "And then, six years later, the jury restored my life to me." "I feel incredibly humbled."
Heard also released a statement, stating, "The disappointment I feel tonight is beyond words." I'm heartbroken that the weight of evidence was insufficient to overcome my ex-enormous husband's power, influence, and persuasion. It's a stumbling block.
It turns the clock back to a time when a woman who spoke up and spoke out could be publically humiliated and shamed. It undermines the notion that women's violence should be regarded seriously.
"I'm disappointed I didn't win this case," she continued. "However, I am even more disappointed that I appear to have lost a privilege that I thought I had as an American – the right to speak freely and honestly."
The verdict was reached after roughly 13 hours of deliberation over three days by a jury of five men and two women. The contentious defamation trial, which began on April 11 and lasted six weeks, saw Depp and Heard swap horrific charges of domestic assault and abuse against a backdrop of social media chatter that favoured the "Pirates of the Caribbean" star.
"No matter what happens, I did get here and I did tell the truth and I have spoken up for what I've been carrying on my back, reluctantly, for six years," Depp said last week on the witness stand after calling Heard's allegations "ridiculous, humiliating, ludicrous, painful, savage, unimaginably brutal, cruel, and all false," according to a source close to Depp.