Johnny Depp has won what could be a significant victory in his long-running battle against Amber Heard. Back in May the actor applied for a petition to force the ACLU and the Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles to disclose Heard’s donations to them and a New York judge has granted it.
Her donation (or lack of one) is seen by the Depp camp as a key issue, as in 2017 Heard promised to donate her substantial divorce settlement to the two organisations. At the time, the actress said:
“As described in the restraining order and divorce settlement, money played no role for me personally and never has, except to the extent that I could donate it to charity and, in doing so, hopefully help those less able to defend themselves.”
In the British libel trial, this donation was held up as evidence that Heard was not a “gold digger,” though appeal court judges later ruled that this hadn’t factored into the court’s decision against Depp.
Even so, it’s become a bone of contention, as Depp has claimed that Heard lied about donating the money, while the actress’ team has countered by saying the donations will be made over 10 years and that they’ve provided proof that she’s already donated $950,000 to the ACLU and $850,000 to the Children’s Hospital.
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As a result of this petition being granted, Depp’s team will now get access to the documents they’ve requested. As per their petition, he’s after:
“Discovery concerning any donations to the ACLU Foundation by Ms. Heard or in her name, and/or any public statements related to such donations; communications with Ms. Heard or those acting on her behalf concerning her relationship with Mr. Depp and divorce from Mr. Depp; discovery concerning Ms. Heard’s work as an ‘ambassador’ for the ACLU Foundation and the conception, drafting, and placement of the Op-Ed; and communications with Ms. Heard or those acting on her behalf concerning the Virginia Action and the preparation and submission of the Wizner Declaration.”
All this is building to a titanic clash in Virginia next April. There, Depp is suing Heard for $50M over a Washington Post op-ed she wrote about her experience as a victim of domestic violence. In response, she filed a $100 million counterclaim, also alleging defamation and that Johnny Depp was responsible for a social media effort to tarnish her career and get her booted off Aquaman and The Lost Kingdom.
The drama that comes out of that should make the London trial look like amateur hour, so grab some popcorn because it’s going to be juicy.