The message from Johnny Depp’s attorneys to his ex-wife Amber Heard is that even though the incorrect juror was present during their heated defamation trial, you are still obligated to make restitution.
Heard’s attorneys attempted in vain to have the $10.35 million judgment against their client overturned on Friday, pointing out that one of the jurors who found the Aquaman actress guilty of defaming Depp had never been called to testify in court.
Lawyer Elaine Bredehoft stated in a statement received by Deadline that “In this case, it seems that Juror No. 15 was not, in fact, the same individual as identified on the jury panel.” “Therefore, Ms. Heard’s right to due process was violated. A mistrial should be declared in this situation, and a new trial should be initiated.
A Virginia resident received a summons for jury service in April, according to the redacted file, according to Deadline. However, a 77-year-old (who was the one summoned) and a 52-year-old both resided at the same home (who showed up in court).
“Clearly, the younger person with this name was the one who showed up for jury service. Heard’s due process rights were violated since the 52-year-old, who served on the panel for six weeks, “was never called for jury service on April 11,” according to the complaint.
“It is highly problematic, as the Court no doubt agrees, for a person who has not been summoned to jury service to still present for jury duty and serve on a jury, especially in a case like this.”
Heard didn’t demonstrate that the error prevented her from mounting a successful defense, according to Depp’s attorneys, who retaliated on Monday.
Depp’s attorneys stated in a statement obtained by Variety that “Ms. Heard cites to no case law to support her argument that the service of Juror 15, if he is not the same person that the Court assigned as Juror 15, somehow compromised her due process and would warrant the drastic remedy of “setting aside the verdict and ordering a new trial.” “Ms. Heard offers no indication of any prejudice, hence her speculative reasoning are invalid,”
“Though obviously disappointed with the trial’s conclusion, Ms. Heard has discovered no reasonable cause to set aside the jury’s judgment in any way,” said the document, which Deadline was able to access. According to Virginia law, a judgement cannot be overturned unless it is “plainly incorrect or without evidence to sustain it.” Mr. Depp humbly suggests that the Court reject Ms. Heard’s post-trial motions because they border on being frivolous.
Heard was accused of defaming Depp in an op-ed she penned for the Washington Post in 2018 in which she referred to herself as “a public figure symbolizing domestic abuse,” and Depp sued her for $50 million. The six-part Pirates of the Caribbean series was among the abandoned film projects, according to the three-time Oscar contender, who claimed her essay destroyed his career.
A seven-person jury last month decided that Depp should receive $5 million in punitive damages (with a $350,000 ceiling) and $10 million in compensatory damages as a result of the article.
One of the jury members who chose Depp’s side after the judgment told Good Morning America that they didn’t find Heard’s testimony to be credible.
We were all quite uncomfortable because of the tears, her emotions, and her constant looking at the jury, the juror added.
Metronews247 has written emails to Heard’s representatives for more information.