The Johnny Depp Amber Heard Trial Verdict Explained
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The Washington Post column that put Amber Heard on the hook for more than $8m has now been amended by the newspaper in the wake of her courtroom defeat.

She did not name Johnny Depp in the piece - which detailed allegations of sexual violence - but a court this week ruled that people could identify the alleged perpetrator as him, and found that the claims were unsubstantiated.

The editor’s note was added on Thursday and read: “In 2019, Johnny Depp sued Amber Heard for defamation arising out of this 2018 op-ed. On June 1, 2022, following a trial in Fairfax County, Va. Circuit Court, a jury found Heard liable on three counts for the following statements, which Depp claimed were false and defamatory.”

The note then listed the three statements that were ruled defamatory:

(1) “I spoke up against sexual violence — and faced our culture’s wrath. That has to change.”

(2) “Then two years ago, I became a public figure representing domestic abuse, and I felt the full force of our culture’s wrath for women who speak out.”

(3) “I had the rare vantage point of seeing, in real time, how institutions protect men accused of abuse.”

The note added: “The jury separately found that Depp, through his lawyer Adam Waldman, defamed Heard in one of three counts in her countersuit.”

Heard was ordered to pay $10 million in compensatory damages and $5 million in punitive damages. However, law caps punitive damages at $350,000.

Heard was awarded $2m in a partial victory in her counterclaim, meaning she’s on the hook for $8.35m. On Thursday, we looked into what'd happen if she can't pay.

The court heard that Heard did not write the essay herself - it was ghost-written by the American Civil Liberties Union on behalf of Heard, who was an ‘ambassador on women’s rights’ at the nonprofit organization.

After the case, Heard said: “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."

Meanwhile Depp, who was pictured in Newcastle, UK, as the case was concluded, wrote on social media: “Six years ago, my life, the life of my children, the lives of those closest to me, and also, the lives of the people, who for many, many years have supported and believed in me were forever changed. All in the blink of an eye.

“Six years later, the jury gave me my life back. I am truly humbled."

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