Johnny Depp has finally won the right to sue his ex-wife Amber Heard in a $50M libel case after a Virginia judge denied her plea to dismiss the suit.
- A Virginia judge granted Johnny Depp the right to sue Amber Heard in a $50M libel case.
- The actor can finally clear his reputation after losing the case against The Sun after they branded him a “wife-beater.”
- The Virginia matter is expected to go to trial in April 2022.
Johnny Depp, 58, is on his way to clear his name following his unfortunate loss in a defamation suit against The Sun after the paper branded him a “wife-beater.” The case was provoked by Amber Heard claiming she had been a victim of domestic abuse, although she did not mention Depp’s name in the 2018 Washington Post op-Ed.
The Pirates of the Caribbean star’s suit accuses Heard, 35, of intentionally creating a “hoax” account of being a domestic abuse survivor. As noted by Daily Mail, the lawsuit was filed in Fairfax County, Virginia, in March 2019.
According to the Aquaman actress, who had requested the libel suit be thrown out, the fact that the ruling in the UK case was in her favor should be enough for the Virginia court to support her as well. However, Judge Azcarate ruled in favor of Depp, marking a major win for the actor.
The Virginia judge ruled the statements made by The Sun and Heard were “inherently different.”
The ruling stated:
“The Sun’s interests were based on whether the statements the newspaper published were false. [Heard’s] interests relate to whether the statements she published were false.”
Furthermore, the ruling pointed that the 58-year-old actor filed the defamation suit against The Sun before Heard’s op-Ed was published. Besides, her name was not mentioned in the case in question.
Last July, following a scandalous trial, UK’s High Court ruled against Depp, claiming the allegations that he was a “wife-beater” were “substantially true.” He was accused of assaulting his ex-wife on several occasions, making her “fear for her life.” Additionally, the British suit claimed the actor was turning into a “monster” after drug and alcohol abuse, leading to him beating Heard.
However, Depp’s lawyers argued that the initial libel had not “factually” considered all the allegations of violence against him.
What’s more, they claimed they had evidence his ex-partner “lied” about giving her entire $7million divorce settlement to charity. The charity was mentioned because, according to them, it influenced how her testimony was viewed.
Following the UK trial, the actor lost his role in Fantastic Beasts and was at risk of losing other major roles due to the collapse of his reputation.
Fortunately, the Virginia trial ruled in his favor, allowing him to sue Heard and clear his name. After the ruling, Depp’s lawyer Ben Chew of the DC office of Brown Rudnick told Deadline:
“Mr. Depp is most gratified by the Court’s decision.”
As per LADbible, the Virginia matter is now expected to go to trial in April 2022.