Johnny Depp’s lawyer Camille Vasquez commends jury after defamation trial
Johnny Depp’s lawyers, Camille Vasquez and Ben Chew, shared their gratitude to the jury after he won his defamation case against Amber Heard.
After weeks of hearings at the Fairfax County Courthouse, the jury returned with their verdict earlier today, and awarded him $15million in damages, after finding in his favor.
The Pirates of the Caribbean actor, 58, was not present in court, but his legal team spoke in a press conference after the result.
‘Today’s verdict confirms what we have said from the beginning, that the claims against Johnny Depp are defamatory and unsupported by any evidence,’ Vasquez began.
‘We are grateful, so grateful, to the jury for their careful deliberation, to the judge and the court staff who have devoted an enormous amount of time and resources towards this case.’
‘Our judicial system is predicated on each person’s right to have his or her case heard,’ Ben continued.
‘And we were honored, truly honored, to assist Mr Depp in ensuring that his case was fairly considered throughout the trial.
‘We are also most pleased that the trial has resonated for so many people in the public, who value truth and justice.
‘Now that the jury has reached its conclusive verdict, it’s time to turn the page and look to the future.
‘Thank you all so much, and thanks to the jury.’
Vasquez added: ‘Thank you so much.’
Depp sued Heard over a 2018 op-ed she wrote in the Washington Post, in which she spoke of her experience with domestic abuse.
While he was not named in the article, his team argued that this falsely implied that he was physically and sexually abusive over the course of their relationship – something he has denied.
In turn Heard countersued for $100m, claiming he libeled her by calling her a liar.
Following the court result, Depp – who is currently in the UK with Sam Fender – in a statement: ‘Six years ago, my life, the life of my children, the lives of those closest to me, and also, the lives of the people who for many, many years have supported and believed in me were forever changed.
‘All in the blink of an eye. False, very serious and criminal allegations were levied at me via the media, which triggered an endless barrage of hateful content, although no charges were ever brought against me.
‘It had already travelled around the world twice within a nanosecond and it had a seismic impact on my life and my career.
‘And six years later, the jury gave me my life back. I am truly humbled.’
He continued: ‘My decision to pursue this case, knowing very well the heigh of the legal hurdles that I would be facing and the inevitable, worldwide spectacle into my life, was only made after considerable thought.
‘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.
‘I feel at peace knowing I have finally accomplished that.
‘I am, and have been, overwhelmed by the outpouring of love and the colossal support and kindness from around the world. I hope that my quest to have the truth be told will have helped others, men or women, who have found themselves in my situation, and that those supporting them never give up.’
Depp added: ‘The best is yet to come and a new chapter has finally begun. Veritas numquam perit. Truth never perishes.’
Heard won one of her three countersuit claims over comments made by her ex’s former lawyer, Adam Waldman, and was awarded $2m.
She said in a separate statement: ‘The disappointment I feel today is beyond words. I’m heartbroken that the mountain of evidence still was not enough to stand up to the disproportionate power, influence, and sway of my ex-husband.
‘I’m even more disappointed with what this verdict means for other women. It is a setback. It sets back the clock to a time when a woman who spoke up and spoke out could be publicly shamed and humiliated. It sets back the idea that violence against women is to be taken seriously.
‘I believe Johnny’s attorneys succeeded in getting the jury to overlook the key issue of Freedom of Speech and ignore evidence that was so conclusive that we won in the UK.
‘I’m sad I lost this case. But I am sadder still that I seem to have lost a right I thought I had as an American – to speak freely and openly.’
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