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Jury to hear opening statements in Johnny Depp defamation case | Celebrity News

FAIRFAX, Va. (AP) — A Virginia jury is set to hear opening statements on Tuesday in a libel lawsuit filed by Johnny Depp against his ex-wife, Amber Heard.

Depp says Heard defamed him when she wrote an op-ed in The Washington Post in 2018 referring to herself as a “public figure representing domestic violence.”

Depp is never mentioned by name, but he says the article implicates him nonetheless because it refers to past charges Heard made when she sought a restraining order against him. Depp denies the abuse allegations.

A seven-member civilian jury, plus four alternates, was selected Monday to hear the case in Fairfax County Circuit Court. Heard’s attorneys had sought to have the case tried in California, where the actors reside. But a judge ruled Depp was within his rights to bring the case to Virginia because the Washington Post’s computer servers for its online edition are located in the county.

The trial is expected to last over a month. A long list of witnesses includes actors Paul Bettany and James Franco, and tech entrepreneur Elon Musk. Some witnesses must appear in person, while others must appear by video link.

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