Amber Heard's request for new trial in Johnny Depp defamation case rejected by US court
Johnny Depp and Amber Heard's defamation case verdict will not be set aside, a US judge said in a written order denying Amber's request for a new trial in their high-profile court case.
Amber Heard's request for a fresh trial in her defamation case against ex-husband Johnny Depp has been denied by a Virginia court in the US. On Wednesday, the judge, who presided over the six-week trial in April-June, issued a written order denying Amber's request to have the June 1 verdict in the high-profile trial set aside, or have a mistrial declared. Amber was ordered to pay $10 million in compensatory damages and $3.5 million in punitive damages in the verdict, while Johnny was ordered to pay Amber $2 million. Read more: Johnny Depp's team argues against Amber Heard's request to dismiss verdict
Last week, Amber's lawyers had filed a motion saying that one of the jurors chosen for the Amber Heard vs Johnny Depp trial was not the same person, who received the jury summons. Johnny’s legal team had rejected the efforts by Amber’s lawyers and called the filing ‘frivolous’.
In a written order on Wednesday, Judge Penney Azcarate rejected all of Amber’s claims and said the juror issue specifically was irrelevant and that Amber can’t show she was prejudiced. “The juror was vetted, sat for the entire jury, deliberated, and reached a verdict. The only evidence before this Court is that this juror and all jurors followed their oaths, the Court’s instructions, and orders. This Court is bound by the competent decision of the jury,” Azcarate wrote, reported AP.
“The juror was vetted, sat for the entire jury, deliberated, and reached a verdict. The only evidence before this Court is that this juror and all jurors followed their oaths, the Court’s instructions, and orders. This Court is bound by the competent decision of the jury,” Azcarate wrote.
Johnny sued Amber for defamation in March 2019 after she wrote a 2018 op-ed piece in The Washington Post about domestic violence. The article did not mention Johnny by name, but his lawyers said the article defamed him by referring to allegations of abuse as she filed for divorce in 2016. In early June, a jury at Fairfax County, Virginia, found Amber guilty of three defamation claims and ordered her to pay $10.35 million in damages to Johnny. The jury had concluded ‘they were both abusive to each other’ but Amber's team failed to prove Johnny's abuse was physical. Johnny was found guilty of one defamation claim and Amber was awarded $2 million in compensatory damages.
With inputs from AP