Johnny Depp vs Amber Heard defamation trial: Camille Vasquez and Benjamin Chew present closing arguments for Johnny Depp
by Ana Walia | Sat, 28 May 2022 12:44:51 GMT
Camille Vasquez presenting the closing argument for Johnny Depp. Image Source: Global News 

Johnny Depp and Amber Heard’s defamation trial is almost near to its verdict and on Friday both of their legal teams presented their closing arguments in front of the jury at the Fairfax County Court in Virginia, who are going to deliberate and reach a decision.

Johnny Depp’s lawyer, Camille Vasquez, was the first to present her closing argument, which started with thanking all of them for being patient and an essential part of the trial. She reminded the jury that they had been entrusted with a serious task and urged them to give Johnny Depp his life back by telling the world that he is not an abuser. She added that there is an abuser in the courtroom but that is not Johnny Depp, and there is a victim of domestic abuse in the courtroom but it is not Amber Heard.

In her closing argument, Camille Vasquez said that Amber Heard walked into a Los Angeles courthouse exactly six years ago to obtain a restraining order against her then-husband, Johnny Depp, and paparazzi captured Amber Heard with an alleged bruise on the right side of her face. She reminded the jury that an ex-employee testified that they were tipped and they knew that Amber Heard was supposed to pause and look at the camera to showcase her bruise and those pictures ended up in the newspapers, magazines, and tabloids. Amber Heard and Johnny Depp settled their divorce in 2017 with Amber Heard getting $7 million, which she claimed she had split with the American Civil Liberties Union and Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, but Camille pointed out that the charities only received a small fraction of the amount that was pledged, mostly from third parties including Johnny Depp and Elon Musk under Amber Heard’s name.

Camille Vasquez mentioned that the charities did not receive the donation they were promised, but that did not stop Amber Heard from telling the world that she had donated the entire amount because she wanted nothing. (A video was played from the interview where Amber Heard mentioned that she had donated). The attorney stated that on December 18, 2018, Amber Heard’s byline appeared in a Washington Post op-ed with the title, "I spoke up against sexual violence — and faced our culture’s wrath. That has to change". She mentioned that even though Johnny Depp’s name was not mentioned in the op-ed, the actor filed a lawsuit noting that the headline, two sentences, and a paragraph in Amber Heard’s op-ed made it very easy for people to know that the op-ed was about Johnny Depp. Camille also pointed out that the jury heard that the team had pitched the op-ed by stating that it was about how she was beaten up by her then-husband, Johnny Depp.

During the closing argument, Camille Vasquez also stated that Amber Heard is a deeply troubled person who is violently afraid of abandonment. She added that the actress is desperate for attention and approval and pointed out that her allegations are wild, over the top, and implausible, and one cannot pick and choose which of them is to be believed and which to disregard. Camille pointed out and played a couple of audio and video clips that had been played before in the court to remind the jury that Amber Heard is the abuser and not Johnny Depp.

The audio where Amber Heard admits to hitting Johnny Depp was also played, and Camille said to the jury just to reverse the situation and imagine how things would have played out. She said that no evidence shows that Johnny Depp physically abused Amber Heard because it never happened. Pointing out their divorce, Johnny Depp’s attorney mentioned that in 2016, Johnny Depp wanted out and so he had told the actress, but she went on the attack and sent a list of financial demands and when they were refused, she landed a blow more damaging and went on to accuse him of the physical abuse. Camille said that Amber Heard did not just want a divorce, she wanted to ruin Johnny Depp.

Camille Vasquez said to the jury that when Amber Heard is caught up in a lie, she covers it up with more lies and everyone saw her at the witness stand performing the role of a lifetime as a heroic survivor of brutal abuse. She wants the jury to believe her accusations of being physically and sexually abused and paint Johnny Depp as a domestic abuser and a rapist, but there is no evidence of it, especially when she was documenting everything.

Johnny Depp’s attorney mentioned to the jury the op-ed by Amber Heard that ran just a few days before her movie Aquaman, which, according to her, would have been a breakout role. Later, Johnny Depp’s attorney, Benjamin Chew, pointed out that the op-ed resonated at the height of the #MeToo movement but no one other than Amber Heard had ever accused or come forward with the allegations against Johnny Depp. Benjamin Chew said, "This is # MeToo without any # MeToo," and mentioned that because of these false accusations by Amber Heard, Johnny Depp was canceled by the industry. The lawyer began to choke up and his voice shook up when he made his argument that the trial for Johnny Depp is about restoring his lost reputation and showing Johnny Depp’s children, Lily-Rose and Jack, that the truth is worth fighting for. The trial is also about restoring Johnny Depp’s name and standing in the community to the fullest extent that the jury can help him with it.

In her rebuttal closing argument, Camille Vasquez called Amber Heard a liar for lying under oath and her team has mischaracterized witness testimonies to make her case but she reminded them that they have been here for six weeks, they have heard the testimonies, and seen the evidence. Camille Vasquez also clarified that Johnny Depp has a dark sense of humor and all those texts seen in the court are simply proof of that.

Camille Vasquez finally concluded that Amber Heard's story doesn't align because her story is like a moving target and added that the actress' story never stays the same. The attorney who proudly rested her case said that Johnny Depp owned his mistake on the stand but Amber Heard did not take any responsibility for what she has done. She reminded the jury that none of the witnesses who testified for Johnny Depp are on his payroll and testified because they knew what the truth was and urged the jury to give Johnny Depp's life and name back.