The verdict is still standing in the Amber Heard-Johnny Depp trial.
On Wednesday, a Virginia judge rejected a motion by Heard to set aside the legal judgement, which awarded $10 million in damages to her ex-husband in his defamation suit against her, The Washington Post reported.
Heard, who also won a $2 million judgement in her countersuit against Depp and his legal team, had requested the verdict either be set aside or have aa mistrial declared, citing a number of factors, including a mistaken identity in the case of one of the jurors.
According to the motion, there were two individuals with “the same last name” residing at the address where the jury duty summons was sent, and that the wrong person showed up.
“The Court cannot assume, as Mr. Depp asks it to, that Juror 15’s apparently improper service was an innocent mistake. It could have been an intentional attempt to serve on the jury of a high-profile case,” the motion contended.
Despite this apparent snafu, the judge rejected the claim, explaining that the issue father juror’s identity was irrelevant to the proceedings.
“The juror was vetted, sat for the entire jury, deliberated, and reached a verdict. The only evidence before this Court is that this juror and all jurors followed their oaths, the Court’s instructions, and orders. This Court is bound by the competent decision of the jury,” Judge Penney Azcarate wrote.
In her motion, Heard had also argued that jurors had failed to focus narrowly on the direct fallout from her 2018 Washington Post op-ed in which she identified herself as a victim of domestic violence, and had instead took into broad consideration the damage to Depp’s reputation.
He lawyers also pointed to the “jury’s duelling verdicts” in finding both sides liable for defamation, calling the outcome “inconsistent and irreconcilable.”
The judge also rejected these claims, though did not offer a specific rationale for her decision.