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'Lost Faith In American Legal System': Amber Heard Settles Defamation Battle With Johnny Depp

Amber Heard revealed her decision in a lengthy Instagram post on Monday. Heard claimed that the choice was made after “a great deal of deliberation” and that it gave her the “opportunity to emancipate me from something I attempted to leave over six years ago and on terms I can agree to.”

The Aquaman actress said it wasn’t an admission or a concession and added, “there are no restrictions or gags concerning my voice moving forward.”

Amber Heard surpasses ex-husband Johnny Deep to become Google
GQ

After being married in 2015 and divorcing 15 months later in 2016, Heard wrote an opinion piece for The Washington Post in 2018 titled,  “I spoke up against sexual violence — and faced our culture’s wrath. That has to change.” 

Amber Heard Surpasses Ex-Husband Johnny Depp To Become Google
TIE

She details sexual harassment and assault from a young age and refers to a system in Hollywood and beyond that has shielded male abusers, eventually ending with a call for action for change.

Johnny Depp And Amber Heard
Johnny Depp And Amber Heard

Amber describes herself as a survivor of domestic violence and refers to her prior statements about the ordeal “public figure representing domestic abuse,” though she doesn’t name Depp.

Johnny Depp
AFP

In March of this year, Depp sued Heard for $50 million in defamation over the op-ed, alleging that it was evident that Heard was addressing him even if his name wasn’t mentioned. 

A judge awarded him over $10 million in May 2022 after ruling in his favor on three of his claims and against him on one. Depp’s attorney’s remarks also won Heard a $2 million payout.

#MenToo Trends After Johnny Depp
Web Screen Grab

Both parties appealed the judgment. Heard said her main statements were only her opinions and did not have any defamatory undertones. Depp, on the other hand, claimed that his attorney’s statements did not bind him. 

Because his lawyer believed what he was saying, he said his words did not rise to the level of actual malice.

Johnny Depp And Amber Heard
Johnny Depp And Amber Heard

“We are pleased to formally close the door on this painful chapter for Mr. Depp, who made clear throughout this process that his priority was bringing the truth to light,” said Benjamin Chew and Camille Vasquez, attorneys for Johnny Depp, in a statement to The Hollywood Reporter.

The jury’s unanimous decision and the resulting judgment in Mr. Depp’s favor against Ms. Heard remain entirely in place. The payment of $1M — which Mr. Depp is pledging and will donate to charities — reinforces Ms. Heard’s acknowledgment of the conclusion of the legal system’s rigorous pursuit for justice.”

Heard said in a statement issued on Monday that her “life as I knew it” was “destroyed” by the process.

“The vilification I have faced on social media is an amplified version of the ways in which women are re-victimized when they come forward. I make this decision having lost faith in the American legal system, where my unprotected testimony served as entertainment and social media fodder.”

Heard also recognized the conclusion of Depp’s libel case in the U.K. against British newspaper The Sun in her statement. 

Amber Heard Johnny Depp
Twitter

The Sun published an article labelling Depp a “wife abuser,” prompting the accusations.

Heard said that a “robust, impartial, and fair system” “protected” her during the trial, preventing her from being forced to reveal “the worst moments of my testimony” to the world.

“In the U.S., however, I exhausted almost all my resources in advance of and during a trial in which I was subject to a courtroom in which abundant, direct evidence that corroborated my testimony was excluded and in which popularity and power mattered more than reason and due process,” she wrote. 

“In the interim I was exposed to a type of humiliation that I simply cannot re-live. Even if my U.S. appeal is successful, the best outcome would be a re-trial where a new jury would have to consider the evidence age. I simply cannot go through that for a third time.”

amber heard
Web Screen Grab

“I cannot afford to risk an impossible bill — one that is not just financial but also psychological, physical and emotional. Women shouldn’t have to face abuse or bankruptcy for speaking her truth, but unfortunately, it is not uncommon,” she added. 

“In settling this case, I’m also choosing the freedom to dedicate my time to the work that helped me heal after my divorce, work that exists in realms in which I feel seen, heard, and believed and in which I know I can effect change.”

(To get the latest updates from Bollywood and Hollywood, keep reading universo virtual Entertainment)

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