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Home / Hollywood / Amber Heard’s former assistant testifies in support of Johnny Depp, accuses her of stealing rape story

Amber Heard’s former assistant testifies in support of Johnny Depp, accuses her of stealing rape story

Amber Heard’s former assistant has accused the actor of exploiting her sexual assault story, and has testified in support of Johnny Depp in an ongoing trial.

hollywood Updated: Jul 16, 2020 15:01 IST
Associated Press
Actor Johnny Depp arrives at the High Court in London, Thursday.
Actor Johnny Depp arrives at the High Court in London, Thursday.(AP)

Amber Heard's former personal assistant claimed Wednesday that she told the model-actor about a violent sexual assault she had endured, only for Heard to “twist" the story for her own use. Kate James gave dramatic testimony at Johnny Depp's libel trial against a British tabloid newspaper that accused the actor of abusing ex-wife Heard during their relationship.

Depp is suing News Group Newspapers, publisher of The Sun, and the paper’s executive editor, Dan Wootton, over an April 2018 article that called him a “wife-beater.” He strongly denies abusing Heard.

Also read: Johnny Depp says Amber Heard punched him on the night he found out he’d lost $650 million

James, who worked for Heard between 2012 and 2015, gave evidence in support of Depp, and said she had told Heard that she was raped at machete-point in Brazil about 25 years ago.

She said she was shocked to learn that in a witness statement, Heard misrepresented and exploited the incident. “She referred directly to a violent rape that occurred to me 26 years ago and she twisted it into her own story and she used it for her own use," James said by video link from Los Angeles. “I am a sexual violence survivor and that’s very, very serious to take that stance if you are not one," she added.

Also read: Johnny Depp’s former estate manager says Amber Heard forced him to lie under oath, threatened his job

Heard is due to give evidence in the case later this week. Heard, 34, has made 14 allegations of violence by 57-year-old Depp between 2013 and 2016, in settings including his private island in the Bahamas, a rented house in Australia and a private jet. He denies them all.

Depp and Heard give wildly differing accounts of their volatile relationship, which began after they met on the set of the 2011 comedy The Rum Diary. They married in Los Angeles in February 2015. Heard filed for divorce the following year, and the divorce was finalized in 2017.

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