London’s Court of Appeal on Thursday refused Johnny Depp permission to challenge a verdict last year that the Hollywood actor had violently assaulted his ex-wife Amber Heard during a tempestuous five-year relationship.

High Court judge Andrew Nicol ruled in November against Depp after he brought a libel case against the Sun tabloid newspaper which had run an article labelling him a “wife beater.”

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“As we have said, it is not easy to persuade this court to overturn the findings of a trial judge on purely factual questions,” the two Court of Appeal judges said in their judgment.

“We do not believe that there is a real prospect of it being prepared to do so in this case.”

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Last week, Depp’s lawyers said Nicol’s ruling was “plainly wrong” and asked to rely on new evidence which they said showed Heard’s claim she had donated her divorce settlement to charity was “a calculated and manipulative lie.”

But the Court of Appeal said the hearings before him last summer were fair.

“He gave thorough reasons for his conclusions which have not been shown even arguably to be vitiated by any error of approach or mistake of law.”

A spokesperson for Heard has since said in a statement to ET Canada: “We are pleased – but by no means surprised – by the Court’s denial of Mr. Depp’s application for appeal. The evidence presented in the U.K. case was overwhelming and undeniable.

“To reiterate, the original verdict was that Mr. Depp committed domestic violence against Amber on no fewer than 12 occasions and she was left in fear of her life. The verdict and lengthy, well-reasoned Judgment, including the Confidential Judgment, have been affirmed. Mr. Depp’s claim of new and important evidence was nothing more than a press strategy, and has been soundly rejected by the Court.”

(Reporting by Michael Holden; editing by William James)