Legal experts say Amber Heard could face a police investigation over perjury allegations after she admitted to not donating $3.5 million from her divorce settlement with Johnny Depp to charity despite telling the High Court she had.
Ms Heard said she would split the 7 million settlement with the Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles and the American Civil Liberties Union after the couple divorced in 2016.
On Monday, however, Heard testified in their libel trial that she has yet to make the full donation because “Johnny sued me for $50 million in March of 2019.”
It came despite the actress claiming she had on several occasions, including under oath in their libel case in the UK High Court.
Depp’s lawyer, Camille Vasquez, also claimed yesterday that Heard had the money for months prior to the lawsuit but failed to donate it as promised.
The revelation has led to accusations that Heard lied under oath and misled the public when discussing the donations on talk shows.
While perjury is not a central issue in the case [the donations], it is the single greatest threat to our justice system, so the police may be called in to investigate to show that anyone who lies to the court can be prosecuted for perjury.
Could Amber Heard face any jail time for this?
A perjury case is notoriously difficult to bring and prosecute. You must demonstrate that someone knowingly told a lie rather than being confused or forgetting. I believe it would be extremely difficult.
Police could look into it, but they are unlikely to prosecute. The case is about what happened during their relationship, not what she spent her money on.
Although deceiving a court is a serious offense, Depp’s team used this strategy in London. How do you prove she was aware? She could have been told that the donations had been made.
Heard contributed $350,000 of that money herself in December 2018, and she has not paid anything since. Depp also contributed $100,000, with another $350,000 coming from a Fidelity Investments fund.
During their legal battle in the UK last year, Depp’s lawyers accused Amber of giving away “a fraction” of the huge sum as part of a “calculated and manipulative lie” to make herself look better.
Heard has stated that she “fully intends to honor the pledges” and that she would “love for him to stop suing me so that I can.”
Perjury is committed in a judicial proceeding when a witness makes a statement material to that proceeding that he knows to be false or does not believe to be true, and it is punishable by up to seven years in prison.