Only one day after the “Aquaman” actress filed an appeal against him, the “Pirates of the Caribbean” actor fired back with an appeal of his own.
Johnny Depp Is Appealing Amber Heard’s $2 Million Dollar Judgement
Depp had previously sued his ex-wife over a 2018 Washington Post op-ed, where Heard claimed to be the survivor of domestic violence. During his time on the stand, Depp denied that he had ever physically abused her, or any woman. At the end of a six-week trial in Fairfax County, Virginia, a seven-person jury found in Depp’s favor.
They awarded him $15 million dollars – $10 million dollars in compensatory damages and $5 million dollars in punitive damages. The $5 million dollar sum was later reduced to $350,000 dollars, the maximum allowed under Virginia state law.
However, Heard did not walk away empty-handed. The jurors found that one of Depp’s attorneys committed defamation when he labeled Heard’s abuse claims “a hoax.” They awarded her $2 million dollars, which is what Depp is now appealing.
A Source Close To Johnny Depp Provides Possible Motive For The Appeal
On Friday, ET was among the first to report that “The Lone Ranger” actor was filing an appeal against his “Rum Diary” costar.
A source close to Depp told ET that “this was an overwhelmingly positive verdict for Mr. Depp” and that “the verdict speaks for itself.”
The insider added that “Mr. Depp believes that this is a time for both parties to move on with their lives and heal. But if Ms. Heard is determined to pursue further litigation by appealing the verdict, Mr. Depp is filing a concurrent appeal to ensure that the full record and all relevant legal issues are considered by the Court of Appeal.”
Amber Heard Filed Her Appeal One Day Before Johnny Depp Filed His
Amber Heard had previously tried to get the court to declare a mistrial by citing a mistake with one of the jurors. However, Judge Penney Azcarate, who oversaw the trial, dismissed her concerns and told Heard’s lead attorney, Elaine Bredehoft, that she was free to file an appeal with the court system if she didn’t like the jury’s verdict. On Thursday, July 21, Heard’s legal team decided to do just that.
Deadline shared a paragraph from the three-page filing, which reads as follows:
“Please take notice that Defendant and Counterclaim Plaintiff Amber Laura Heard, pursuant to Rule 5:9 of the Rules of the Supreme Court of Virginia, hereby gives Notice of her Appeal to the Virginia Court of Appeals from this Court’s June 24, 2022 Final Judgment Order, the July 13, 2022 Order on Defendant and Counterclaim Plaintiff Amber Laura Beard’s Post-Trial Motions (“Post-Trial Motions Order”), and from all additional Orders and rulings by the Trial Court prior to the entry of the Final Judgment Order and Post-Trial Motions Order.”
However, Deadline also noted that Heard has not paid the $8.3 million dollar bond that is required under Virginia law to conduct an appeal. It seems she has only put up $500 dollars.
It’s not clear at this time if Depp provided the necessary funds to file an appeal, or when the legal drama between the former couple will eventually come to an end.
Heard’s Legal Team Says The Court ‘Made Errors That Prevented A Just and Fair Verdict’
“We believe the court made errors that prevented a just and fair verdict consistent with the First Amendment,” a spokesperson for Amber Heard told The Blast. “We are therefore appealing the verdict. While we realize today’s filing will ignite the Twitter bonfires, there are steps we need to take to ensure both fairness and justice.”
However, a spokesperson for Johnny Depp also released their own statement, saying that they are “confident” that Heard will not be able to appeal the jury’s initial ruling.
“The jury listened to the extensive evidence presented during the six-week trial and came to a clear and unanimous verdict that the defendant herself defamed Mr. Depp, in multiple instances,” said a spokesperson for Johnny Depp. “We remain confident in our case and that this verdict will stand.”