Amber Heard’s legal team has filed an official appeal against the result in her recent libel trial against ex-husband Johnny Depp.
A jury in the United States determined that the Aquaman actress did disparage Depp in her 2018 op-ed for The Washington Post on her experience with domestic abuse.
Depp, 59, was granted $15 million (£13 million) in total damages, including $10 million (£8.3 million) in compensatory damages and $5 million (£4 million) in punitive damages. However, per Virginia state law, this was limited to $350,000 (£293k), bringing the total to $8.35 million (£7 million).
Heard, 36, was given $2 million (£1.7 million) in compensatory damages despite counter-suing Depp for $100 million (£83.6 million) – he originally filed the complaint demanding $50 million (£42 million) from his ex-wife.
It has now been established that her legal team filed an appeal with the Fairfax County court on Thursday.
‘We feel the court committed mistakes that prohibited a reasonable and fair decision consistent with the First Amendment,’ said a representative for Heard.
‘As a result, we are appealing the judgement.’ While we recognise that today’s filing may spark a Twitter firestorm, there are procedures we must follow to guarantee fairness and justice.’
‘The jury listened to the significant evidence provided throughout the six-week trial and came to a clear and unanimous conclusion that the defendant herself defamed Mr Depp in several occasions,’ stated Depp’s spokeswoman. We remain confident in our position and believe that this judgement will be upheld.’
It comes only a week after a judge dismissed all of Heard’s post-trial motions.
Heard’s attorneys argued that the decision that she had defamed Depp was not supported by evidence and that the jury was made up of the incorrect people throughout the trial.
However, Judge Penny Azcarate ruled that the jury problem was immaterial and that Heard had failed to demonstrate prejudice.
‘The juror was screened, sat for the full jury, deliberated, and came to a decision,’ she explained.
‘The sole evidence before this court is that this jury and other jurors obeyed their oaths, instructions, and commands from the court.’
‘This court is bound by the jury’s competent decision.’
‘Following a six-week jury trial, a jury of Ms Heard’s peers reached a decision against her in practically all areas,’ stated Depp’s legal team, according to Deadline.
‘Though obviously dissatisfied with the outcome of the trial, Ms Heard has discovered no reasonable basis to overturn the jury’s finding in any way.’
‘Virginia law states unequivocally that a verdict cannot be overturned unless it is “plainly incorrect or lacks evidence to sustain it.’