Johnny Depp’s legal team has responded to Amber Heard’s allegations that a juror should not have been allowed to serve on the panel.
Ben Chew and Camille Vasquez are the two most recognizable lawyers in Depp’s team as they defended him during the televised defamation trial and were frequently discussed on social media.
Depp’s team argued that his $10.35 million defamation verdict against ex-wife Amber Heard should be upheld, despite the possibility that the wrong juror apparently showed up for the trial.
Amber Heard claims ‘verge into the frivolous’ says Johnny Depp’s lawyers
In their lengthy response, Depp’s attorneys fired back at Amber Heard’s request for a new trial.
“Though understandably displeased with the outcome of trial, Ms. Heard has identified no legitimate basis to set aside in any respect the jury’s decision. Virginia law is clear that a verdict is not to be set aside unless it is ‘plainly wrong or without evidence to support it,’” the memorandum in opposition reads, per Deadline.
The Pirates of the Caribbean star’s legal team asked the judge to uphold the verdict due to the “overwhelming” evidence presented during the trial and claimed that Heard’s Post-Trial Motions claims “verge into the frivolous.”
The legal filing points out that Heard’s attorney’s filed the post-trial motions long after the July 1 deadline.
Depp was awarded $10.35 million in damages after the jury found that Heard had defamed him in all three counts by alluding to her domestic violence allegations in a December 2018 op-ed about the #MeToo movement.
Heard was also awarded $2 million in a counterclaim, in which she alleged that Depp’s lawyer had defamed her by accusing her and her friends of creating an elaborate abuse hoax.
For Amber to appeal the jury verdict, she must pay an $8.35 million bond with 6% interest per year.
Johnny Depp’s legal team says Amber Heard already knew about the juror
Depp’s team responded to the July 8 updated filing by Heard’s team which detailed the allegations that an improper juror was allowed to participate in the defamation trial.
“In her Supplemental Memorandum, Ms. Heard does not, because she cannot, make any proffer as to why she could not have discovered the ‘new facts’ until now. This is because the Clerk’s Office provided the pre-panel jury list to the parties back on April 6, 2022, more than two months ago and five days before the jury was empaneled.”
Depp’s team uses Amber’s representative’s own words against her, claiming that they had the opportunity to change the juror.
“In a rare moment of candor, Ms. Heard admits that she was aware of the purported discrepancy in Juror 15’s birth year from the very start of trial because ‘Juror 15 … was clearly born later than 1945,’” Depp’s team wrote in response, continuing:
“Ms. Heard therefore concedes she had more than enough time before the trial started, and during the six-week trial, when at least two alternates were available, to investigate and discover the alleged ‘new’ facts. Clearly, Ms. Heard waived any right to allege ‘new’ facts she chose not to investigate for so long, much less to demand the extraordinary remedy of a mistrial.”
Both Heard and Depp have other legal matters to worry about. The Aquaman actress is being sued by one of her insurers from New York Marine and General Insurance Co.
On the other hand, Depp is heading back to court over claims he hit a man on a movie set.