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Amber Heard Plans To Appeal Against Johnny Depp Defamation Verdict

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Source: theguardian.com

Jurors in US court ruled in favour of Depp’s claim of defamation on three counts after seven-week

The actor Amber Heard is reported to be planning an appeal after losing a defamation trial against her former husband Johnny Depp over allegations of domestic abuse.

Jurors in a Virginia court ruled in favour of Depp’s claim of defamation on three counts, awarding the Pirates of the Caribbean actor $15m (£12m), which was later reduced by the judge to $10.35m.

Alafair Hall, Heard’s spokesperson, said the Aquaman actor planned to appeal the decision, according to the New York Times.

Heard had demanded $100m in a countersuit against Depp in which she agued she was defamed by his press agent who described her allegations as “an abuse hoax” aimed at capitalising on the #MeToo movement. She succeeded on only one count and was awarded $2m.

Depp’s lawyers convinced the jury that he did not assault Heard and that her allegations of domestic abuse in a Washington Post article defamed Depp and did so “with malice” or knowing that the claim was false.

In a statement afterwards, which made no mention of the reported appeal, Heard expressed her disappointment. She said: “I’m even more disappointed with what this verdict means for other women.”

Heard added: “It is a setback. It sets back the clock to a time when a woman who spoke up and spoke out could be publicly shamed and humiliated. It sets back the idea that violence against women is to be taken seriously.”

The jurors’ unanimous decision ended a seven-week trial that featured dozens of witnesses and experts weighing in on whether Depp was abusive to Heard during their 15-month marriage.

Lisa Bloom, a high-profile US lawyer who represented women whose sexual harassment claims led to the dismissal of the Fox News anchor Bill O’Reilly, predicted the Heard-Depp case would be decided on appeal.

Speaking to BBC Two’s Newsnight, she said: “I want to emphasise that this is not the end because most defamation cases are really decided on appeal.”

She added: “I have handled a number of defamation cases, including representing Janice Dickinson against Bill Cosby, [when] we had to argue two appeals in that case, both of which were successful.

“I think this is an inconsistent verdict. How can it be that Amber Heard was defamed when Johnny Depp’s lawyer said that her allegations were a hoax, and yet Johnny Depp was also defamed when she said she was representative of domestic violence?

“She also got hit with the defamation verdict for the headline in the article, which she did not write … I think this is going to go up on appeal. I think within a year or two, we’re going to have a more definitive answer and outcome in this case.”

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US President Joe Biden turns 80 Today: New Generation’ of Democratic Leaders Takes Control in Congress

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President Joe Biden will celebrate his 80th birthday on Sunday, marking the first time a sitting president has reached that milestone while in office and fueling speculation about how his advancing age will affect his political future.

Biden — who was the oldest person to assume the presidency in January 2021, just 61 days after his 78th birthday — has said he intends to make another White House bid, even as his age-adjacent peers, including 82-year-old House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, have made the decision to step away from leadership in order to make way for a younger generation.

“My intention is that I will run again. But I’m a great respecter of fate and this is ultimately a family decision. I think everybody wants me to run but we’re going to have discussions about it. And I don’t feel any hurry one way or the other to make that judgment.” he said last week, after helming what many say is the most successful midterm election for a sitting president’s party in decades, though noting that those results would not have an impact on his decision to run again.

PHOTO: President Joe Biden greets guests before speaking at an event at the White House complex, Nov. 18, 2022, in Washington, D.C.

Biden is the oldest person to serve as commander in chief in the nation’s history. Should he seek reelection in 2024 and win, the president would be 86 by the end of his second term. He has said he’ll talk over his future with his wife and the rest of his family over the holidays.

Biden has said he is hoping that he and his wife “get a little time to actually sneak away for a week around between Christmas and Thanksgiving” and that his decision to run for reelection will likely “be early next year we make that judgment.”

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Shanquella Robinson’s Death in Cabo, Father Believes Attack Was a Set Up

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Shanquella Robinson‘s mysterious death in Mexico smells like a set up to her father … he tells TMZ he believes his daughter was attacked as part of a diabolical plan.

Shanquella, who was from North Carolina, was found dead last month in her room in Los Cabos … where she was vacationing with a group of friends. Her parents say the friends told them the 25-year-old died of alcohol poisoning.

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Drunk woman steals 45ft ferry while shouting ‘I’m Jack Sparrow’

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A drunken woman stole a passenger ferry on the River Dart and shouted 'I'm Jack Sparrow' and 'I'm a pirate' as she drifted away from police on the shore

A DRUNK has been jailed after she stole a 100-seat ferry and smashed into boats, yelling, “I’m Jack Sparrow! I’m a pirate!”

Alison Whelan, 51, boarded the 45ft Dart Princess with a friend after a two-day bender, where she got drunk on Lambrini and ate poisonous deadly nightshade, which causes hallucinations.

She undid the mooring ropes in the early hours and drifted up a river on the tide, bashing into other boats “like a pinball machine”.

Whelan taunted police, shouting: “What are you going to do now?” and “I believe this is out of your jurisdiction!”

Thirty police, a lifeboat crew, Coastguards and paramedics had to be called.

And when the cops finally arrested her after an hour when the ferry came to rest in calm water, she told them: “We’d have ended up in St Tropez if we hadn’t been caught.”

Whelan, of Paignton, Devon, stole the double-decker ferry in nearby Dartmouth a year ago.

She had called an ambulance, claiming to have had a seizure. Medics found her drunk and rambling, and one of them was pushed over by her friend, Tristam Locke.

The medics called police and went to their vehicle to wait, then looked in their mirror and saw the ferry drifting away from shore.

Whelan told police she untied “two or three” of the mooring ropes because she kept tripping over them.

She said she then felt the boat moving and “noticed the hotels getting a long way away”.

The ferry suffered £1500 of damage when it hit two other boats, which were also damaged. Torquay magistrates heard Whelan and Locke could have been killed on rocks if the tide on the River Dart had been going out at the time.

Locke was fined £100 last year for assaulting an ambulance technician.

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