Johnny Depp has won his defamation case against his ex-wife Amber Heard and the jury awarded him an overall $15 million in damages.
Depp won his three counts of defamation and was awarded $10 million in compensatory damages and $5 million in punitive damages in the lawsuit, NBC News reported.
However, though Depp was awarded $5 million in damages, he will only receive $350,000, the Washington Post reported.
According to state law in Virginia (which is where the trial was held), punitive damages are not allowed to be more than $350,000.
But Heard also made money off of this trial.
The jury decided that Depp, through his lawyer Adam Waldman, defamed Heard on one of three counts in her counter-suit. The jury awarded her $2 million in compensatory damages in her counter-suit.
It took the jury several days to come to this decision. They began deliberations on May 27.
Depp originally sued his ex-wife for $50 million over an op-ed she wrote in the Washington Post in 2018. In that piece, she called herself a “public figure representing domestic abuse.”
After Depp filed his defamation suit, Heard counter-sued Depp for $100 million after Depp’s lawyer, Waldman, called her accusations a hoax.
But Heard has stuck to her story and accusations of abuse.
Despite losing the defamation case, Heard immediately released a statement after the decision.
“The disappointment I feel today is beyond words. I’m heartbroken that the mountain of evidence still was not enough to stand up to the disproportionate power, influence, and sway of my ex-husband,” she wrote, the Washington Post reported. “I’m even more disappointed with what this verdict means for other women. It is a setback. It sets back the clock to a time when a woman who spoke up and spoke out could be publicly shamed and humiliated. It sets back the idea that violence against women is to be taken seriously.”
“I believe Johnny’s attorneys succeeded in getting the jury to overlook the key issue of Freedom of Speech and ignore evidence that was so conclusive that we won in the UK. I’m sad I lost this case. But I am sadder still that I seem to have lost a right I thought I had as an American — to speak freely and openly.”
Depp also released a statement and roundly declared that the accusations were false and ruined his life.
“False, very serious and criminal allegations were levied at me via the media, which triggered an endless barrage of hateful content, although no charges were ever brought against me. It had already traveled around the world twice within a nanosecond and it had a seismic impact on my life and my career,” part of Depp’s statement read, NBC News reported.
“And six years later, the jury gave me my life back,” the statement continued. “I am truly humbled.”
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