Johnny Depp and Amber Heard defamation trial: Summary and timeline

Actor Johnny Depp has won his defamation case against his ex-wife, Amber Heard, as a seven-person jury ruled unanimously in his favor on Wednesday. However, before the case, the couple’s relationship that began over a decade ago had turned toxic, leading to their split in 2016.

In 2018, Heard wrote an op-ed for The Washington Post in which she shared her experience of surviving domestic violence without mentioning Depp’s name. This caused a legal battle between the two, with Depp suing for $50 million in damages.

The recent jury found that Heard’s claims of abuse were false, and she knew this when publishing her essay, acting with malice. As a result, Depp was awarded $10 million in compensatory damages and $5 million in punitive damages in his defamation suit.

Heard had countersued for $100 million, claiming that she was only violent with Depp in self-defense or defense of her younger sister. Her countersuit centered around three statements made by Depp’s former attorney, Adam Waldman, in 2020 to the Daily Mail, in which he called her allegations a “hoax.”

The jury found Depp, through Waldman, guilty of defaming Heard on one count, awarding her $2 million in compensatory damages but no punitive damages. The following timeline highlights the key events in Depp and Heard’s relationship that led up to the court case.

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