Film actor Johnny Depp filed a libel case against the London-based publication The Sun by News Group Newspapers (NGN), including Dan Wootton, journalist and executive editor of the paper, before a UK high court for a two-year old article that accused him of beating his ex-wife. On Tuesday morning, the trial between the Hollywood star and the newspaper presided Royal Courts of Justice, which shall last for three weeks.
The article being sued, published April 2018 on their website headlining “Gone Potty – How can JK Rowling be ‘genuinely happy’ casting wife beater Johnny Depp in the new Fantastic Beasts film?”, was defended by the legal team of NGN to be “entirely accurate” in labeling the actor was a “wife beater.” The case that the British paper holds is the allegation of abuse claimed by Depp’s former wife and actress Amber Heard. A statement from the publication reads: “The sting or articles is correct, namely that he bet his wife Amber Heard causing her to suffer significant injury and on occasion leading to her fearing for life.”
According to the star’s barrister David Sherborne, the article has committed “defamatory allegations of the utmost seriousness” tainting the reputation of the actor, as well as writing accusations about him that injures his wife seriously. “The articles amount to a full-scale attack on the claimant as a ‘wife beater,’ guilty of the most horrendous physical abuse,” Sherbone stated, insisting the allegations are “complete lies.” They even claimed the opposite, that it was Depp who was abused, citing a particular instance of Heard punching his face over and over again.
The 57-year old actor and musician’s party has consistently denied claims of violence by his ex-wife, saying that the accusations were invented. The Pirates of the Caribbean lead actor himself admitted on the hearing to be a binge drinker and drug user, but insisted that he has never beaten Heard, claiming that he is an aspiring “southern gentleman.” He declared on the witness box that he never settled for violence.
Depp has revealed before that the last straw that led him to divorce Heard on 2017 was when their marital bed was defecated, and his former wife considered it only a prank. The Hollywood actor has also shared with the press that he was married to a narcissist with “calculating, diagnosed borderline personality,” as recalled by The Guardian. However, it was Amber who was granted a restraining order versus Depth for grounds of domestic violence four years ago.