Johnny Depp has asked the judge overseeing his $50 million (£41 million) defamation case against ex-wife Amber Heard to block her request for a protective order to keep all matters sealed.
Johnny sued the actress for defamation after she referred to herself as “a public figure representing domestic abuse” in a Washington Post article last year (18), claiming the entire article depended “on the central premise that Ms. Heard was a domestic abuse victim and that Mr. Depp perpetrated domestic violence against her”.
The actor has always maintained he never laid his hands on Heard, insisting he was the victim of her rages.
The Aquaman star filed a motion to keep the details of the ongoing lawsuit private, but in new legal documents obtained by The Blast on Friday (06Sep19), Depp and his lawyers have contested her request, claiming it’s important for the “objective facts” of the case to remain in the public domain.
“It would be grossly unfair to allow Ms. Heard, who has already disseminated to the media and the public as much defamatory material about her former husband as she could concoct, to now hide the objective facts that reveal her falsehoods behind an artificial wall of confidentiality,” Johnny’s filing reads.
“Moreover, Mr. Depp is suing Ms. Heard for objectively disprovable lies that she and a few of her confederates and representatives have told about Mr. Depp in the media. The Protective Order Ms. Heard now seeks would perversely allow all these false and damaging public statements to stand uncorrected.”
Johnny claims core evidence presented in the case proves that Amber was lying about the alleged abuse he inflicted upon her.
“Only the truth can restore the incalculable damage that Ms. Heard has inflicted on Mr. Depp. Mr. Depp, whose reputation has suffered severe harm from these false claims, should have the right to the restorative transparency of the truth that Ms. Heard seeks to hide,” the documents continue.
Johnny’s attorneys have made it clear that Heard was the alleged physical abuser in the relationship.
“Ms. Heard’s own, unsealed deposition admissions from her prior testimony, show Mr. Depp to be the actual victim of serious violence and other abuse at the hands of Ms. Heard,” the papers read. “In this context, it would be unfair to allow Ms. Heard, having used publicity of her hoax as a sword against Mr. Depp for years to destroy his reputation while burnishing hers, to now use a protective order as a shield against disclosures of materials which will undo all the damage her false publicity has done.”
Meanwhile, Heard has hired top defence lawyer and Times Up fund co-founder Roberta Kaplan to represent her.
“Mr. Depp will soon learn that our courts have strong mechanisms for dismissing baseless claims and determining the truth,” Kaplan said in a statement. “Now that we are in this case, we fully intend to put an end to this meritless bullying of our client once and for all.”
The Time’s Up defence fund was set up in 2018 to provide financial support to victims of sexual abuse and harassment.
Johnny and Amber were married for 15 months before splitting in 2016.