A jury has found both Amber Heard and Johnny Depp liable for defamation in their lawsuits against each other.
Depp sued Heard, his ex-wife, for defamation over a 2018 op-ed she wrote for The Washington Post in which she described herself as a “public figure representing domestic abuse.” Though Depp was not named in the article, he claims it cost him lucrative acting roles. Heard countersued her ex-husband for defamation over statements Depp’s attorney made about her abuse claims.
The jury found that Heard defamed Depp in three separate statements in The Washington Post piece and that Depp defamed Heard with one statement his attorney made.
The jury awarded Depp $10 million in compensatory damages and $5 million in punitive damages. The jury awarded Heard $2 million in compensatory damages and no money for punitive damages.
Depp sought $50 million in damages and Heard sought $100 million. Punitive damages in the state of Virginia are capped at $350,000, so the judge reduced the punitive damages award to that amount.
Heard kept her eyes down as the verdict was read. Depp was not present in court, but released a statement that said, in part, “the jury gave me my life back.”
“From the very beginning, the goal of bringing this case was to reveal the truth, regardless of the outcome. Speaking the truth was something that I owed to my children and to all those who have remained steadfast in their support of me,” he said. “I feel at peace knowing I have finally accomplished that.”
Depp’s attorneys thanked the jury and the court after the verdict was announced. Wednesday, adding that “it’s time to turn the page and look to the future.”