Savannah Guthrie grills Amber Heard over audio ‘taunting’ Johnny Depp
Judge Penney Azcarate on Friday (24 June) filed a judgement order reflecting the verdict previously reached in the Johnny Depp v Amber Heard trial.
On 1 June, a Virginia jury ruled Ms Heard defamed former husband Mr Depp, bringing to an end a widely watched six-week trial.
It also ruled in favour of Ms Heard in some aspects of her countersuit against Mr Depp. The jury awarded Mr Depp $15m in damages after finding that he proved all three claims against Ms Heard. The amount was reduced to $10.35m because of limits set by state law.
The actors weren’t required to be present in the courtroom for the hearing, which begin at 11am ET on Friday and wrapped up in about an hour.
A timeline of Depp and Heard’s relationship and legal battles
The trial in Depp’s defamation lawsuit against Heard drew to a close with a civil jury handing an overwhelming victory to Depp.
Depp sued Heard in March 2019, alleging a column Heard wrote in The Washington Post was defamatory and asking for $50m in damages. Heard filed a $100m countersuit.
After a six-week trial in Fairfax, Virginia, the jury returned a verdict on 1 June after deliberabating for around two-and-a-half days.
Here is a timeline of Johnny Depp and Amber Heard’s relationship, separation, and court battles, from when they are said to have started dating to the latest trial:
Clemence Michallon24 June 2022 19:45
Judge Azcarate’s judgement reflecting the verdict given on 1 June has been published by the Fairfax County Court.
It also includes the filled-in verdict sheets through which the jury made its decision known on 1 June.
You can view the document online here.
Clemence Michallon24 June 2022 18:59
Amber Heard suggests she will appeal Johnny Depp ruling, no settlement in court
Heard has suggested she will appeal the ruling following Depp’s victory in the defamation trial.
Judge Penney Azcarate entered a judgement echoing the verdict that was handed down on 1 June, Law & Crime reported.
The legal teams of the actors met in court on Friday but it remains unclear if they have discussed a possible settlement. Judge Azcarate gave the two parties until Friday to reach a settlement if they wanted to do so.
Clemence Michallon24 June 2022 17:46
Heard’s representative shares statement
A spokesperson for Amber Heard tells The Independent: “As stated in yesterday’s congressional hearings, you don’t ask for a pardon if you are innocent. And, you don’t decline to appeal if you know you are right.”
Clemence Michallon24 June 2022 16:58
Judgement entered reflecting verdict
Judge Penney Azcarate has entered a judgement reflecting the verdict rendered on 1 June, Law & Crime’s Angenette Levy reports:
Clemence Michallon24 June 2022 16:56
In the weeks after the trial began, Vasquez became one of the best-known figures among followers of the case. Depp’s fans turned to her the online attention usually reserved to actors and singers. There have been celebratory tweets and Instagram fan accounts. While the trial was ongoing, Depp supporters were known to wait outside the courthouse, hoping to catch a glimpse of Vasquez and possibly get their own hug. After Vasquez’s cross-examination of Heard, a meme reimagined the attorney as Thor, the god of thunder portrayed by Chris Hemsworth in Marvel movies. Vasquez’s star only rose further after a verdict was announced on 1 June largely favoring Depp.
Clemence Michallon24 June 2022 16:55
Heard’s options to appeal
After the Depp v Heard verdict was announced, The Independent spoke with three attorneys about Ms Heard’s possible grounds for an appeal, or even a new trial: Lisa Bloom of The Bloom Firm, whose clients have included Janice Dickinson, Mischa Barton, and several victims of Jeffrey Epstein; Jesse Weber, a host and attorney at the Law & Crime network, who covered the trial from the courthouse in Fairfax, Virginia; and Mitra Ahouraian, an entertainment attorney in Beverly Hills who represents actors, directors, producers, and musicians.
Here is what they said about Amber Heard’s options for a possible appeal:
Clemence Michallon24 June 2022 16:26
Depp and Heard lawyers about to meet in final attempt to reach settlement
Attorneys for Johnny Depp and Amber Heard are scheduled to meet at 11am ET today for their last chance to thrash out a final settlement in the case.
On 1 June, Mr Depp won his defamation lawsuit against Ms Heard after a jury of seven determined that she had defamed him on all three counts in a 2018 op-ed for The Washington Post.
Jurors awarded Mr Depp $10m in compensatory damages and $5m in punitive damages, before Fairfax County Circuit Judge Penney Azcarate reduced the latter to the state’s legal limit of $350,000.
Ms Heard won one of her three counterclaims against her ex-husband and was awarded $2m in compensatory damages but $0 in punitive damages, leaving the Aquaman actress $8.35m out of pocket.
Judge Azcarate is yet to enter the verdict into the docket, with Friday offering the two sides a final chance to reach a settlement in the case.
If they fail to do so, the verdict will be entered into the docket and the two sides will have to pay each other the ordered damages.
However, after the verdict is entered both sides can still appeal.
The case will move to the Court of Appeals of Virginia after 21 days of the verdict being filed, giving both parties 30 days to then file a notice of appeal.
Rachel Sharp24 June 2022 15:55
Camille Vasquez helps man who collapses on board flight
Johnny Depp’s attorney Camille Vasquez has been hailed a “wonder woman” after she rushed to help an elderly man who collapsed on board an American Airlines flight.
Ms Vasquez was on a flight from Los Angeles to New York earlier this week when the incident unfolded, reported TMZ.
Passengers on board the flight told the outlet that a man in his 70s suffered a medical emergency, collapsing and hitting his head close to where Ms Vasqeuz was sitting in first class with her bodyguard.
The Independent’s Rachel Sharp has the full story:
Rachel Sharp24 June 2022 15:30
ICYMI: Heard grilled by Savannah Guthrie over being ‘caught in a lie’ about divorce settlement
Last week, in Amber Heard wfirst sitdown interview since her bombshell defamation trial with ex-husband Johnny Depp, the Aquaman actor was grilled by Savannah Guthrie about being “caught in a lie” over her pledge to donate her $7m divorce settlement to charity.
“Do you think to the jurors sitting there that was you getting caught in a lie?” probed Ms Guthrie, whose husband works for Mr Depp’s legal team, in a clip from the interview aired last week.
Ms Heard defended the furore over the charitable donation, saying that the trial was used to try to paint her as “a liar” and arguing that she shouldn’t have had to pledge her entire settlement in the first place for people to believe her accusations of abuse against her ex-husband.
When the couple’s $7m divorce settlement was reached back in August 2016, Ms Heard had said she would split the entire payout equally between the ACLU and the Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles.
Ms Heard came under intense scrutiny during the trial after it was revealed during the proceedings that the ACLU had so far received less than half of the $3.5m payment.
Get the full briefing from The Independent’s Rachel Sharp below.
Rachel Sharp24 June 2022 15:00