Amber Heard breaks silence after Johnny Depp loses latest ‘wife beater’ court battle

Emma Powys Maurice
·2-min read

Amber Heard has welcomed the news that Johnny Depp lost his bid to overturn a damning High Court libel ruling.

Depp lost a libel battle against The Sun in November 2020 over an article that labelled him a “wife beater”, after an explosive three-week trial that combed through his bitter relationship with ex-wife Heard, 34.

Requesting permission to appeal earlier this month, the star’s lawyers argued he had not received a fair trial and said they had “fresh evidence” about Heard, accusing her of lying about donating her full $7 million (£5.5 million) divorce settlement to charity.

But on Thursday (25 March), Court of Appeal judges said these allegations were untested and irrelevant, and refused permission to appeal.

Lord justices Underhill and Dingemans said the original hearing “was full and fair” and that the trial judge “gave thorough reasons for his conclusions which have not been shown even arguably to be vitiated by any error of approach or mistake of law”.

Responding to the decision, a spokesman for Amber Heard said: “We are pleased, but by no means surprised, by the court’s denial of Mr Depp’s application for appeal.

“The evidence presented in the case was overwhelming and undeniable. The verdict and lengthy, well-reasoned judgment have been affirmed.”

The 2018 article that triggered the lawsuit bore the headline: “Gone Potty: How can JK Rowling be ‘genuinely happy’ casting wife beater Johnny Depp in the new Fantastic Beasts film?”

Depp strenuously denied that he was violent towards Heard in any way and sued the tabloid for damage to his reputation.

The Sun based its defence on 14 separate allegations of domestic violence dated between early 2013 and May 2016, which were examined in forensic detail before the court.

The High Court ruled that the paper was able to prove what they reported was true on the balance of probabilities, recognising “overwhelming evidence” that Depp attacked Heard at least 12 times during their relationship.

The Fantastic Beasts actor has now exhausted all his UK court options. He continues to sue his ex-wife in the US over a 2018 article in the Washington Post, with the case delayed to next year.

Depp’s lawyers say the star looks forward to presenting “complete, irrefutable evidence of the truth”.