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04 Jul 2022

Amber Heard says she still loves Depp but fears further defamation lawsuits

Amber Heard says she still loves Depp but fears further defamation lawsuits

Amber Heard said she still loves Johnny Depp but fears “every step I take” will present an opportunity for a further defamation lawsuit.

In the latest instalment of her interview with NBC Today, the 36-year-old actress told journalist Savannah Guthrie she has “no bad feelings or ill will” towards Depp following their high-profile court case.

The interview, her first on TV since the case concluded two weeks ago, also saw her voice fears she could be “silenced” in the future.

Asked whether she was nervous about what she can now say, she said: “Of course. I took for granted what I assumed was my right to speak.”

Guthrie then questioned her over whether she felt she could be sued for defamation again.

Heard replied: “I am scared that, no matter what I do, no matter what I say or how I say it, every step that I take will present another opportunity for silencing, which I guess is what a defamation lawsuit is meant to do – it is meant to take your voice.”

Asked whether she still had love for Depp, she replied: “Yes, absolutely. I love him.

“I loved him with all my heart and tried the best I could to make a deeply broken relationship work. And I couldn’t.

“I have no bad feelings or ill will towards him at all. I know that might be hard to understand.

“Or it might be really easy to understand if you have just ever loved anyone… It should be easy.”

The six-week trial also saw Heard challenged over why she had not yet donated her seven million dollar (£5.7 million) divorce settlement to charities as promised.

“I made a pledge and that pledge is made over time by its nature,” she replied.

But Guthrie interjected: “If you say you donated, you know that everybody thinks that you have donated it, not that you have pledged it.

“And for the jury sitting there, do you think they felt like that was you getting caught in a lie?”

Heard replied: “I don’t know because I feel like so much of the trial was meant to cast aspersions on who I am as a human, my credibility, to call me a liar in every way you can.

“This is another one of the examples where if you pull back and you think about it, I shouldn’t have to have donated it in an effort to be believed.

“I shouldn’t have had to earmark the entirety of that.”

Heard also denied that she or someone in her team tipped off celebrity website TMZ about when she would be attending a Los Angeles courthouse to file a restraining order against Depp.

She said: “I was going to say, he certainly didn’t get tipped off by me or anyone in my (team). Why would they? No. As I testified before, it had nothing to do with me.”

She also addressed a text message shown in evidence in which Depp appeared to threaten her with “total global humiliation”.

Asked whether he had achieved that, Heard said: “I know he promised it. I testified to this. I am not a good victim, I get it. I am not a likeable victim. I am not a perfect victim.

“But when I testified I asked the jury to see me as human and here, his own words, which is a promise to do this, it seems as though he has.”

Two weeks ago, the jury found a 2018 article that Heard wrote for the Washington Post about her experiences as a survivor of domestic abuse to be defamatory.

Depp consistently denied during his own evidence the “outrageous, outlandish” claims of abuse and said he had “spoken up for what I have been carrying on my back reluctantly for six years”.

The 59-year-old was awarded 10.35 million US dollars (£8.2 million) in damages.

Heard won on one count of her countersuit, successfully arguing that Depp’s press agent defamed her by claiming her allegations were “an abuse hoax” aimed at capitalising on the #MeToo movement.

The jury awarded her two million dollars (£1.5 million) in damages.

As deliberations took place, Depp appeared on stage with veteran rock guitarist Jeff Beck, 77, during his UK tour and the pair also recently announced a collaborative album.

Depp previously lost a similar trial in the UK which he brought against the publisher of The Sun newspaper after an article, also written in 2018, referred to him as a “wife-beater”.

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