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Johnny Depp and Amber Heard’s Libel Court Battle: Everything to Know – Us Weekly

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Johnny Depp and Amber Heard faced off in a legal battle in July 2020 at the High Court in London after Depp was accused by a U.K. publication of being a “wife beater” following the pair’s 2017 divorce.
Depp sued The Sun newspaper for libel for an April 2018 story citing allegations that Heard previously made detailing 14 different instances of abuse. The actor repeatedly stated that Heard’s accusations were false, but when she gave verbal testimony in the libel suit in July 2020, the actress went into extreme detail about the emotional, verbal and physical abuse she claimed she faced during their marriage.
“He demeaned me anytime I tried to wear anything that could be seen as sexy, calling me a ‘whore,’ ‘slut,’ ‘fame-hungry’ and ‘an attention whore,’ it got worse over time. He started saying things like, ‘Well, I’m going to have to watch you get raped’ and ‘I hope you get railed by a bunch of f–king fellas. Sometimes he used racial epithets about the men I would be — or deserved to be — assaulted by,” she alleged while speaking in court at the time. “Some incidents were so severe that I was afraid he was going to kill me, either intentionally, or just by losing control and going too far.”
The Rum Diary costars tied the knot in February 2015 and confirmed their split in May 2016. Three years later, the Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald actor “vehemently” denied ever being violent with his ex-wife, flipping the script and accusing her of domestic violence as well.
“She hit, punched, and kicked me. She also repeatedly and frequently threw objects into my body and head, including heavy bottles, soda cans, burning candles, television remote controls, and paint thinner cans, which severely injured me,” Depp claimed in court documents related to a separate defamation lawsuit in May 2019.
In October 2020, a judge ruled that The Sun’s claims against Depp were “substantially true.” However, the Pirates of the Caribbean star has maintained his innocence and requested multiple times to have his ruling appealed.
Despite the traumatic testimony she gave in London, a source previously told Us Weekly that Heard is trying to find a bright side. “She’s been surrounding herself with loved ones and close friends who she trusts and trying to do ‘normal’ activities like getting together for dinner safety,” the source said, adding that the actress is “trying not to let the legal drama and hate get to her.” (In July 2021, Heard announced she welcomed a baby girl, Oonagh, via surrogate three months prior.)
Scroll down for more details on Depp and Heard’s libel battle:
This is an ongoing article that was originally published in July 2020 and last updated on August 5, 2021.
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Anand works as a work from home journalist based in Trivandrum, Kerala, India. Anand had contributed content for various websites and also worked as a chief technical editor for ASPAlliance.com. He also contributed content for several print magazines like DevPro (formerly asp.netPRO) and his headshot appeared on the front page of the July 2006 issue of the magazine.