Johnny Depp vs. Amber Heard: Court hears explosive claim about star’s broken ‘promise’

Amber Heard has been accused in court of failing to pay more than $2 million she promised to charity from her $7 million divorce settlement with Johnny Depp.

Amber Heard has been accused in court of paying less than half of what she promised to donate to charity from her US$7 million (A$9.8 million) divorce settlement from Johnny Depp.

Depp is suing his ex-wife for defamation over a column she wrote for The Washington Post in December 2018. In the article, Heard described herself as a “public figure representing domestic abuse.” Mrs Heard, 36, never named Mr Depp, 59, but he claims she clearly implied he was a domestic abuser and is seeking $50m ($A67m) in damages.

Ms Heard countersued, asking for $100 million ($134 million Australian) and claiming she suffered “unrestrained physical violence and abuse” at his hands.

Terence Dougherty of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) testified at the high-profile trial in Fairfax County, Virginia, on Thursday.

Mr. Dougherty told the court that Ms. Heard is an ACLU ambassador for domestic violence issues. He said the nonprofit’s communications team had drafted the op-ed under the actress’s name after conversations with her about her “personal experiences.”

Ms. Heard reached a divorce settlement with Mr. Depp in 2016 and had previously announced that she would donate her entire $7 million payment to charity, splitting it between Children’s Hospital Los Angeles and the ACLU.

On Thursday, Mr. Dougherty testified that Ms. Heard had promised to donate $3.5 million of her $7 million divorce settlement to the organization, but had only received $1.3 million to date.

He said that Mrs. Heard paid directly $350,000; $100,000 was paid through Mr. Depp; $500,000 was paid through a donor-advised fund; and $350,000 was also paid through a donor-advised fund.

According to Mr. Dougherty, the organization approached Ms. Heard in 2019 about her “next delivery of her donations, but we learned that she was having financial difficulties.”

The court heard that it was understood, according to an email from billionaire Elon Musk who was connected to the donor-advised fund that put up $850,000 on Ms Heard’s behalf, that the $3.5 million would be paid out over the course of ten years, although this was never confirmed.

Ms. Heard is yet to testify and provide her version of events, but is expected to take the stand next week.

Depp filed the libel suit in the US after losing a separate libel case in London in November 2020 that he brought against The Sun for calling him a “wife beater.”

On Wednesday, Depp and Heard’s former agent, Christian Carino, said Disney never explicitly stated that Depp would be cut from the “Pirates” franchise due to domestic abuse allegations, but that “it went without saying.”

He also revealed that he arranged a meeting between the couple two months after Ms Heard filed a restraining order against Mr Depp. Carino said that Heard was dating Musk during the time she was trying to reconcile with her ex-husband and that he had told her that dating famous men meant things would be public.

Mr. Depp, who earlier testified on his own behalf, blamed Ms. Heard’s accusations for the loss of his lucrative role in “Pirates” as Captain Jack Sparrow.

Both Heard and Depp, who met in 2009 and were married from 2015-2016, have accused each other of physical violence during their relationship. Both have denied the claims.

In court documents, Ms Heard accused Mr Depp of abusing her throughout their relationship, claiming that he slapped her, kicked her, head-butted her and pulled strands of hair from her scalp.

Previously, Depp received several damning text messages that he sent to Heard, friends and associates during the couple’s relationship.

“We are going to burn amber,” read a text message sent by Depp to his friend Paul Bettany on June 11, 2013.

Let’s drown her before we burn her. I’m going to fuck her burned corpse after her to make sure she’s dead.”

Originally published as Johnny Depp Vs Amber Heard: Court Hears Explosive Claim About Star’s Broken ‘Promise’

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