Amber Heard Requests Verdict In Johnny Depp Defamation Trial Be Overturned

The Aquaman star's legal team have claimed the verdict was not supported by the evidence presented during the six-week trial.
Amber Heard in court last month
Amber Heard in court last month
EVELYN HOCKSTEIN via Getty Images

Amber Heard has requested that a US judge overturn the verdict against her multi-million dollar defamation case with Johnny Depp and order a new trial.

Last month, Heard’s ex-husband won a defamation lawsuit against the Aquaman star, over a 2018 article she wrote for the Washington Post.

Although Heard’s article did not mention Depp by name, his lawyers alleged that it falsely implied he had physically and sexually abused her during their relationship.

Shortly after the verdict was announced, her legal team made it clear that they intended to appeal the jury’s decision, which they claimed she has “excellent grounds” for.

In documents seen by the PA news agency, Heard’s lawyers say that the decision returned by the jury last month was not supported by the evidence presented during the six-week trial.

Her legal team have also argued that investigations should be made into “improper juror service”.

“The verdict is excessive as a matter of law in light of the evidence and law, and should be set aside,” the documents stated.

Johnny Depp
Johnny Depp
Drew Angerer via Getty Images

“For all the reasons set forth above, and for the reasons set forth on the record during the hearings and at trial, in the Motions in Limine and Motions to Strike, Ms Heard respectfully requests this Court to set aside the jury verdict in favour of Mr Depp and against Ms Heard in its entirety, dismiss the complaint, or in the alternative, order a new trial.

“Ms Heard further requests this Court to investigate potential improper juror service and take appropriate action warranted by the results of the investigation.”

Heard’s lawyers claim that one of the jurors during the trial was not properly vetted by the court and that information was “inconsistent”.

“The information on the jury panel list appears to be inconsistent with the identity and demographics of one of the Jurors,” the document, signed by Ms Heard’s lawyer Elaine Bredehoft, states.

“Juror No 15 was apparently born in 1970, not 1945, as reported to and relied upon by the parties – including Ms Heard – in selecting a jury panel.”

Amber Heard and Johnny Depp pictured in 2016 while they were still married
Amber Heard and Johnny Depp pictured in 2016 while they were still married
George Pimentel via Getty Images

The filing added that the damages awarded to Depp following the verdict, which total $15 million (around £12.4 million), were “excessive” and “indefensible”.

The sum was subsequently reduced by judge Penney Azcarate to $350,000 (£288,930) under a state cap.

Depp said he felt “at peace” and was “truly humbled” after winning the lawsuit, adding that his decision to pursue the case “was only made after considerable thought” and his goal was to “reveal the truth, regardless of the outcome”.