In December of 2022, a jury unanimously found that Amber Heard had defamed Johnny Depp, awarding him $5 million in punitive damages and $10 million in compensatory damages. This ruling came after a two-week trial in which Depp accused Heard of lying about him in a 2018 article in The Washington Post.
The trial was a culmination of a long-running dispute between the former couple, which began in 2016 when Heard filed for divorce from Depp after 15 months of marriage. In the months that followed, Heard accused Depp of physical and emotional abuse, which Depp denied.
In the trial, Depp argued that Heard had defamed him by accusing him of being a “wife-beater” in the 2018 article. Depp’s lawyers argued that Heard had lied about him in order to advance her career and that her false accusations had damaged his reputation.
Heard’s lawyers argued that her accusations were true and that she had a right to speak out about her experiences. They also argued that Depp had not suffered any financial losses as a result of her accusations.
The jury ultimately sided with Depp, finding that Heard had defamed him and awarding him $5 million in punitive damages and $10 million in compensatory damages. This ruling was seen as a victory for Depp, who had long maintained that Heard’s accusations were false and had caused him significant damage.
The ruling also sent a strong message to those who might be tempted to make false accusations against someone in the public eye. It showed that such accusations can have serious consequences and that those who make them can be held accountable for their actions.