Johnny Depp scored a big win in his ongoing defamation case against his ex-wife Amber Heard after a New York judge ruled in his favor and has permitted him to figure out if the actress donated a portion of her divorce settlement to the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) as she claimed she would. Heard said she would make a large donation of $7 million to both the ACLU and Children's Hospital Los Angeles shortly after the couple finalized their divorce in 2017. However, according to court documents filed by Depp's attorneys, the Pirates of the Caribbean star is skeptical about if she followed through on her word and has asked both entities to share documented proof of her donations.
Therefore, the judge permitted him, forcing the ACLU to provide documents highlighting the Aquaman actress's generous donation. "Mr. Depp is most gratified by the Court's decision," Depp's attorney, Benjamin Chew, told USA Today in a statement.
Heard's attorney Elaine Bredehoft, in a July 22 hearing, previously told the court that Heard still fully intends to make her donations to the ACLU and CHLA, but the matter of when is still up in the air. "It is undetermined what those payment schedules will be," Bredehoft said, before adding that the actress has already given "the first payment toward the pledges" –– which is still a good chunk of change. Currently, she's donated "more than a million" to both organizations. "We produced the documents from the ACLU on how much she has. She has always said she fully intends to continue to give the full $7 million, but she can't do it yet. She will do it when she can. But she has given a significant amount to both," Bredehoft continued on Heard's behalf.
Depp sued the ACLU in May, asking that the organization adhere to the subpoenas presented as he continues his $50 million defamation lawsuit against Heard over her 2018 Washington Post Op-ed, implying that Heard faced abuse at his hand while the two were together. The subpoenas were for "discovery concerning any donations to the ACLU Foundation by Ms. Heard or in her name, and/or any public statements related to such donations; communications with Ms. Heard or those acting on her behalf concerning her relationship with Mr. Depp and divorce from Mr. Depp; discovery concerning Ms. Heard's work as an 'ambassador' for the ACLU Foundation and the conception, drafting, and placement of the Op-Ed; and communications with Ms. Heard or those acting on her behalf concerning the Virginia Action and the preparation and submission of the Wizner Declaration."