Johnny Depp Attorneys File Notice To Appeal Jury's $2 Million Award To Amber Heard

The stars are still battling over a defamation case that went largely Depp's way.

Lawyers for actor Johnny Depp have filed a notice to appeal a verdict awarding ex-wife Amber Heard $2 million in compensatory damages for defamation.

The two-paragraph notice stated that “all adverse rulings” would be appealed in the judgment signed last month in Virginia by Fairfax County Chief Circuit Court Judge Penney Azcarate at the end of the stars’ sordid testimonies of their deeply disturbing relationship.

Attorneys for Heard said soon after the verdict was announced that they planned to appeal the verdict, which also awarded Depp $10 million in compensatory damages and $5 million in punitive damages. (It was reduced to a maximum total of $10.3 million to conform with a statuary cap.)

The jury returned the verdict last month after it determined that Heard had defamed Depp by describing herself as a domestic abuse survivor in a 2018 Washington Post opinion piece. Heard in turn was awarded the $2 million in compensatory damages and no punitive damages on a counterclaim against Depp when the jury ruled that one of Depp’s lawyers defamed her by calling her accusations a “hoax.”

Johnny Depp, left, and Amber Heard
Johnny Depp, left, and Amber Heard
via Associated Press

The notice of appeal by the “Pirates of the Caribbean” star surprised one of Heard’s attorneys.

“I think [Depp’s team] felt so buoyed by the judgment, they viewed [Heard’s verdict] as insignificant in comparison to what they obtained,” said Elaine Bredehoft, lead attorney for the Aquaman actor, reported Courthouse News. She said she was confident about the strength of their case on appeal.

Heard’s legal team already filed a motion for a mistrial earlier this month to set aside the damages for Depp. They argued that Depp’s award was unsupported by evidence and claimed that at least one juror was not properly verified by court officials to determine the juror’s identity.

Heard can still appeal the verdict to the Virginia Court of Appeals. The issues presented to the appellate court could vary from the issues Azcarate rejected.


What's Hot