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Amber Heard forced to hire new legal team after lawyer Elaine Bredehoft steps down

Rachel Lang

Published 
| Last updated 

Amber Heard forced to hire new legal team after lawyer Elaine Bredehoft steps down

Amber Heard has had to hire a new team of attorneys after lawyer Elaine Bredehoft quit ahead of the upcoming appeal showdown in the Johnny Depp defamation case.

Bredehoft represented Heard as she went up against her ex-husband earlier this year, after the Pirates of the Caribbean star accused his ex-wife of defaming him in a 2018 op-ed written in The Washington Post.

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Heard has now hired lawyers David L. Axelrod and Jay Ward Brown to represent her as she tries to have the courts rescind their ruling in favour of her ex-husband.

The 36-year-old actor's choice of lawyers has also hinted at how the Aquaman star intends to take on her appeal.

Her freshly-minted lawyers are First Amendment legal experts, with the new attorneys confirming that the first clause of the US Bill of Rights will play a key role.

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"We welcome the opportunity to represent Ms. Heard in this appeal as it is a case with important First Amendment implications for every American," Axelrod and Brown said in a joint statement, as per EW.

"We're confident the appellate court will apply the law properly without deference to popularity, reverse the judgment against Ms. Heard, and reaffirm the fundamental principles of Freedom of Speech."

Axelrod and Brown are specialists in the first amendment and have previously wielded their expertise as counsel for Sarah Palin when she successfully took on the New York Times in 2017 over a damaging editorial.

Heard hugs her attorney Elaine Bredehoft after closing arguments during her ex-husband Johnny Depp's defamation case. Credit: Reuters/Alamy
Heard hugs her attorney Elaine Bredehoft after closing arguments during her ex-husband Johnny Depp's defamation case. Credit: Reuters/Alamy
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Attorney Ben Rottenborn, who represented Heard in the initial trial, will remain on the team as a co-counsel as they prepare to take on Depp again in the courts.

After weeks of testimony from witnesses including both Depp and Heard, a jury largely sided with Depp and awarded him $10.4 million (£8.59m) in damages. Heard won part of her countersuit and was awarded $2m (£1.65m), however soon after the result was announced Bredehoft shared Heard's plans to appeal the verdict.

When Heard's legal team filed the appeal, a spokesperson for Heard told The Los Angeles Times: "We believe the court made errors that prevented a just and fair verdict consistent with the 1st Amendment. We are therefore appealing the verdict. While we realise today’s filing will ignite the Twitter bonfires, there are steps we need to take to ensure both fairness and justice."

Featured Image Credit: Reuters/Alamy.

Topics: Amber Heard, Johnny Depp, News, US News

Rachel Lang
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