Johnny Depp's Libel Case Against Amber Heard Goes Ahead as Judge Refuses to Drop It
19:11 GMT 03.05.2022 (Updated: 19:27 GMT 03.05.2022)
© AP Photo / Frank AugsteinIn this file photo dated Tuesday, July 28, 2020, US Actor Johnny Depp arrives at the High Court in London during his case against News Group Newspapers over a story published about his former wife Amber Heard, which branded him a 'wife beater'
© AP Photo / Frank Augstein
Depp’s lead lawyer argued that the jury now has enough evidence showing that Heard “physically abused” her ex-husband.
Judge Penney Azcarate on Tuesday allowed Johnny Depp’s libel suit against the actor’s ex-wife Amber Heard to move forward, rejecting a request from the latter's lawyers to have the case dismissed.
While Heard’s legal team argued that Depp failed to make his case as a matter of law and that "no reasonable jury could find in his favor", as AP put it, the judge stated that, at this point, the case should be allowed to proceed if Johnny has provided even a "scintilla" of evidence to back up his claims.
The trial now continues with Depp resting his case and Heard’s lawyers set to present their witnesses.
Depp’s lead lawyer Benjamin Chew insisted that the jury has plenty of evidence backing Depp’s claims that Heard falsely accused him of abuse, not to mention that the evidence shows that Heard “physically abused” her ex-husband.
However, Heard’s lawyer J. Benjamin Rottenborn claimed that the evidence actually confirms Amber’s allegations of abuse.
"We haven't gotten to put on our case yet," he said. "This is all evidence that has come in while the plaintiff controls the playing field."
Johnny Depp is suing Amber Heard for $50 million, alleging that she defamed him in an opinion column she published in The Washington Post (printed in Fairfax County) in December 2018.
In the publication in question, Heard claimed to have been a victim of domestic abuse, while never directly naming Depp.