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Jury awards Johnny Depp $15 million in damages in libel suit against Amber Heard, gives her $2 million in countersuit

A jury has sided with Johnny Depp in the high-profile defamation trial between him and his ex-wife, Amber Heard. The jury awarded Depp $10 million in compensatory damages and $5 million in punitive damages.

Heard was awarded $2 million in compensatory damages and no punitive damages.

The decision was handed down to Judge Penney Azcarate on Wednesday. Closing arguments in the case were presented in court on Friday, and the jury began deliberating Friday afternoon.

The jury continued their deliberations Tuesday and Wednesday; it was announced that a verdict had been reached before 2 p.m. ET Wednesday. The reading of the verdict was delayed when Azcarate sent the jury back to properly complete the forms for compensatory damages.

Heard, 36, was present in court to hear the jury's verdict read while Depp, 58, was not. A source close to Depp told ABC News he was not present "due to previously scheduled work commitments made before the trial" and that he was "watching from the United Kingdom."

A source close to Depp confirmed to ABC News that the actor will not be present to hear the verdict read in the Fairfax, Virginia, courthouse "due to previously scheduled work commitments made before the trial." They added that he will "be watching from the United Kingdom."

A spokesperson for Heard shared the following statement with ABC News: "Your presence shows where your priorities are. Johnny Depp plays guitar in the UK while Amber Heard waits for a verdict in Virginia. Depp is taking his snickering and lack of seriousness on tour."

Depp, 58, sued Heard, 36, for $50 million over a 2018 op-ed she wrote for The Washington Post in December 2018. In the piece, the "Aquaman" actress wrote about surviving domestic abuse without identifying her alleged abuser by name. In response, Heard filed a $100 million countersuit against Depp.

The couple met while filming "The Rum Diary," released in 2011, and they were married from 2015 to 2017.

Depp and Heard lobbed abuse claims at each other during their respective testimonies over the course of the weekslong trial. Both deny each other's claims of abuse.

During Depp's testimony, the "Pirates of the Caribbean" actor alleged he is the victim of domestic violence, not Heard. While on the stand, Heard admitted to being physically violent with Depp but claimed she always acted in self-defense. Heard alleged that Depp physically abused her countless times during their years together, which he denied.


 Source: abcnews


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