Actor Johnny Depp has lost his libel case against The Sun.
Depp, 57, brought a libel case against News Group Newspapers — the organization that publishes The Sun — for labeling him a “wife-beater” in an article published in April 2018.
In the article, The Sun alleged that Depp assaulted his wife Amber Heard multiple times.
In the ruling delivered in London, Judge Andrew Nicol said there was evidence that the actor abused Heard.
Judge Nicol concluded that the defendants provided sufficient evidence that their “wife-beater” allegation against Depp was “substantially true.”
“I have found that the great majority of alleged assaults of Ms. Heard by Mr. Depp have been proved to the civil standard,” Nicol declared in his long-awaited ruling, according to the Associated Press.
Depp and Heard traded abuse allegations
Nicol handed down the ruling after weeks of court hearings during which Depp and Heard, 34, traded abuse allegations.
Heard claimed that Depp assaulted her on multiple occasions. She claimed that the acts of violence were fueled by alcohol and drug use.
She referenced an alleged March 2015 “three-day hostage” incident that happened in Australia while Depp was filming a Pirates of the Caribbean movie.
Depp’s lawyers have indicated he will appeal the ruling
Depp’s lawyers have reacted to the ruling, describing it as “perverse as it is bewildering.” They have also indicated that Depp will appeal the decision.
“The judgment is so flawed that it would be ridiculous for Mr. Depp not to appeal this decision,” one of Depp’s lawyers reportedly said.
Meanwhile, a spokesperson for The Sun described the decision as a “stunning victory for press freedom.”
Depp is also suing Heard over a Washington Post opinion piece
Meanwhile, Depp is also involved in a $50 million lawsuit against Heard for publishing an opinion piece in the Washington Post in which she talked about her experience of alleged domestic violence and abuse.
Although she did not name Depp in her essay, the actor believed it was about him.
Depp is known for starring in a number of big-budget blockbuster films, including the Pirates of the Caribbean film series and the Fantastic Beasts film series.
Heard has also appeared in a number of successful box office films, including the new Justice League movie and Aquaman.
Depp and Heard met on the set of The Rum Diary in 2011 and got married in 2015. They divorced in 2017.
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