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Sam Fender appears to delete Johnny Depp Instagram post amid backlash

·2-min read
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Sam Fender appears to have deleted a photo from his Instagram Story showing him at a Newcastle pub with his “hero”, Johnny Depp.

The surprise encounter took place amid the Hollywood actor’s defamation trial win against his ex-wife Amber Heard.

On Wednesday (1 June), a jury found that Heard had defamed Depp on all three counts and awarded him $10m (£8m) in compensatory damages and $5m (£4m) in punitive damages. Heard was awarded $2m (£1.6m) in compensatory damages, but no punitive damages.

While the verdict was being read out in the US, Depp was spotted at the pub in Newcastle with Jeff Beck. The actor had earlier joined Beck on stage as part of the musician’s ongoing tour, including at the Royal Albert Hall in London.

It then emerged that Fender was there, too, after the North Shields singer-songwriter shared a photo of the group to his Instagram Stories.

“Some serious heroes,” the 28-year-old captioned the image.

This morning (2 June), it appears Fender has deleted the post, as it is no longer available on his Instagram Story (which are normally available for 24 hours after sharing).

The Independent has contacted Fender’s representatives for comment.

Fender has been called out for appearing to support Depp before the verdict was announced.

Some fans said they were particularly disappointed because Fender’s 2021 hit, “Seventeen Going Under”, has been used by victims of abuse on TikTok to tell their stories of mistreatment.

“Regardless of what he may or may not have done, Depp's become a figurehead in a toxic misogynistic fervour,” wrote another.

“By posting this, Fender might as well be sticking two fingers up at every woman and/or abuse victim he's ever performed to.”

Depp had sued his ex-wife for $50m (£40m) for allegedly implying he abused her in a 2018 Washington Post op-ed. She pursued a $100m (£80m) counterclaim. During the six-week trial, the court heard testimony from Heard alleging that Depp had subjected her to physical and sexual violence.

 (Sam Fender/Instagram)
(Sam Fender/Instagram)

Following the jury’s verdict, Heard released a statement saying: “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… 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.”

You can follow for more updates on The Independent’s live blog here.

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