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Amber Heard seeks mistrial after verdict in Johnny Depp defamation case over alleged juror mishap

Amber Heard is seeking a mistrial after a jury in Fairfax County, Va., ruled largely in favor of her ex-husband Johnny Depp during their highly publicized defamation trial.  According to redacted court documents published by Deadline, Heard’s attorneys requested that Judge Penney Azcarate throw out the $10.35 million verdict awarded to Depp over allegations that one of the jurors had not actually been summoned to participate in the trial.

The court documents were filed to supplement an earlier filing from June in which Heard’s attorney Elaine Bredehoft first claimed that Juror 15 was not the same person listed on the jury panel. Bredehoft alleged that the intended juror and the actual juror have the same last name and address but that the person who had been summoned to participate was born in 1945 and that the person who participated was born in 1970.  Bredhoft wrote in the document that a “mistrial should be declared and a new trial ordered,” arguing that Heard’s legal right to due process was compromised.

The 58-year-old Depp filed the $50 million lawsuit against his ex-wife Heard, 35, after she published a 2018 op-ed in the Washington Post claiming that she was a victim of domestic violence, though didn’t name him. Heard countersued Depp for $100 million.

Depp was awarded $10 million in compensatory damages and $5 million in punitive damages. The court also awarded $2 million in compensatory damages to Heard for her counterclaim that she had been defamed by Depp’s attorney (who had referred to her allegations of domestic violence as a “hoax.”).

Editorial credit: Featureflash Photo Agency / Shutterstock.com

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