Johnny Depp loses libel suit against Amber Heard & UK’s The Sun. London High Court agrees Pirates of the Caribbean actor hit ex wife 14 times. Actor faces uncertain career.
Following a 16-day trial London‘s High Court found the Hollywood star is a wife beater after Heard claimed he had hit her 14 times during their turbulent relationship. Presiding Justice Nicol threw out the actor’s defamation case saying that the actor had in fact beat Ms Heard 12 out of 14 times – starting in 2013 when he slapped the actress when she made a comment about his tattoo the UK’s Sun reports.
The ruling leaves the 57-year-old Pirates of the Caribbean actor’s reputation in tatters, with the actor who claimed losing his Caribbean’s acting franchise now facing future reticence from studio heads to hire him.
He sued the Sun’s publisher, News Group Newspapers (NGN), and its executive editor, Dan Wootton, over an article published in the Sun in April 2018 that originally carried the headline ‘Gone Potty: How can JK Rowling be ‘genuinely happy’ casting wife beater Johnny Deppin the new Fantastic Beasts film?’
Heard, 34, who was the newspaper’s chief witness, submitted 14 occasions during their relationship when she claims her former husband assaulted her, providing graphic details of his drink and drugs fueled attacks.
Counter suing and future court dates
Over 16 days, the trial provided a series of astonishing claims:
- Depp admitting to taking large amounts of cocaine, which he insisted ‘brought him to a normal level,’ and drinking more than ‘normal’ people could;
- Heard was accused of defecating in their marital bed.
- Heard was accused of having an affair with Tesla billionaire Elon Musk, which she denied, and that Depp threatened to cut his penis off.
- Depp lost $650 million he made at the height of his Pirates of the Caribbean fame and was left owing $100m in taxes.
- Depp admitted to spending $30,000 on red wine each month.
- Depp ‘attacked’ Heard over three days in Australia while on a drugs and booze bender
Depp denied all the allegations, claiming that it was his ex-wife who was violent towards him.
Both Depp and Heard gave evidence in what was dubbed ‘the libel trial of the century’ as the two traded accusations over who perpetrated the domestic violence during their relationship.
They met on the set of ‘The Rum Diary,’ in 2009, married in February 2015 with Depp filing for divorce in May 2016.
The High Court verdict is being seen as just a ‘first round’ victory for Heard with other legal battles looming against his ex-wife. He is also suing her for US$50 million in a trial set to take place in the US next May after she wrote about being a domestic abuse survivor in a Washington Post article.
Heard is counter-suing for $100 million saying that Depp and his legal team have mounted a global smear campaign against her.