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The verdict in the Johnny Depp-Amber Heard trial is in. Here’s what to know.

The verdict in the Johnny Depp-Amber Heard trial is in. Here’s what to know.

The jury deciding the outcome of the defamation trial between Johnny Depp and Amber Heard has reached a verdict, but when the court convened Wednesday afternoon, the judge returned the verdict forms to the jury to fill in the amount of damages they thought were warranted.

Judge Penney S. Azcarate’s instruction seemed to indicate that the jury had found that someone had been defamed, but it was not clear whether it was Mr. Depp or Ms. Heard. The jury returned to the deliberation room.

“It has to be at least a dollar for compensatory damages and up to whatever you feel the damages should be,” Judge Azcarate said.

The six-week trial in Fairfax County Circuit Court turned into a contentious battle between the two Hollywood stars over the truth of what happened in their relationship and marriage, which fell apart in 2016. Both Ms. Heard and Mr. Depp accused each other of repeated physical abuse throughout their relationship.

Mr. Depp, 58, sued Ms. Heard, 36, for her 2018 op-ed for The Washington Post in which she described herself as a “public figure representing domestic abuse.” After more than a year of legal sparring, Ms. Heard then filed a countersuit against Mr. Depp in 2020, alleging that he defamed her when a lawyer representing him released statements calling her allegations of abuse a hoax.

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Mr. Depp claimed that Ms. Heard’s op-ed “devastated” his career and reputation. Ms. Heard claimed that the statements by the lawyer harmed her ability to work and caused her emotional distress and humiliation.

The seven-person jury, which started deliberating on Friday but took a break over the long holiday weekend, has been tasked with determining whether Ms. Heard defamed Mr. Depp and whether he defamed her. To deliver a victory to either of them, the jury must find that a greater weight of the evidence shows they were defamed, and that there was “clear and convincing evidence” that it was done with “actual malice.”


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