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Depp was the victim of ‘abuser’ Heard, court told

“She is the abuser, not Mr Depp. He is no wife beater,” Sherborne told the court, adding her “lack of credibility” had been proven in the evidence she had given.

He said Heard was a “wholly unreliable witness and, frankly, compulsive liar” who had tailored her story to meet the evidence produced against her.

Amber Heard arrives at the High Court in London on Tuesday.

Amber Heard arrives at the High Court in London on Tuesday.Credit:AP

A tape recording was played to the court in which Depp tells Heard she is lying when she says she didn’t punch him, which Sherborne said demonstrated Heard’s “propensity to violence”.

“Don’t tell me what it feels like to be punched,” Depp said in the recording, before Heard retorts: “I hit you like this. But I did not punch you.”


Sherborne said that the admission that Heard hit Depp would have caused “consternation” if roles were reversed.

In his testimony, Depp said he modelled himself as a “Southern gentleman” who would never strike a woman.

“He has never hit a woman in his entire life. Period, full stop, nada,” Sherborne said.

“It is not just a southern gentleman thing. It is also because he was subject to domestic abuse by his mother.”

He said texts from Depp highlighted by Heard’s lawyer for their violent and misogynistic language had been chosen selectively, and they should not be taken as testimony.

“The exaggerated texts … should not be taken literally,” Sherborne said. “He may use poetic licence, he may use metaphor, but he never ever says that he hit Miss Heard.”

He added that Depp had been candid about his drug and alcohol intake, but denied that those things unleashed the “monster” in Depp.

Instead, Sherborne quoted messages between Heard and Depp where the “monster” referred to Depp when he was keeping away from Heard.

“I don’t know any version of that myth which involves the monster running away from the fight,” Sherborne said.


“You can understand why Mr Depp wanted to just run away. And when he does, he gets criticised for that as well. That’s the monster.”

Earlier in the case, Heard has described multiple incidents when she said Depp assaulted her, and on Monday a lawyer for News Group Newspapers said the allegation of wife-beating was true and that Depp was a “hopeless addict”.

“There is no doubt that Mr Depp regularly and systematically abused his wife,” lawyer Sasha Wass said in her closing argument. “The characterisation that he is a wife beater is entirely truthful.”

She said Depp was “a hopeless addict who repeatedly lost his self-control and all ability to restrain his anger”.

The case is due to end on Tuesday, London time, but judge Andrew Nicol is not expected to deliver his ruling for several weeks.


For help in a crisis call 000. If you or anyone you know needs support, you can contact the National Sexual Assault, Domestic and Family Violence Counselling Service on 1800RESPECT (1800 737 732), Lifeline 131 114, or Beyond Blue 1300 224 636.

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