Johnny Depp's Lawyers on Amber Heard Owing Him $10.35 Million After Verdict: 'Was Never About the Money'

·5 min read

Johnny Depp's defamation lawsuit against his ex-wife Amber Heard "was never about money," according to his attorneys.

On Wednesday — one week after Depp, 58, won all three defamation claims in the case against Heard, 36, and was awarded $15 million in damages by a jury — his lawyers Camille Vasquez and Benjamin Chew appeared on Good Morning America, where Chew told George Stephanopoulos that his client was only interested in "restoring his reputation" during the six-week trial.

"You all have said the goal is not to impoverish Ms. Heard. Is it possible we could see a settlement where she forgoes the appeal, in return for Mr. Depp waiving any monetary damages?" asked Stephanopoulos.

"We obviously can't disclose any attorney-client communications, but as Mr. Depp testified and as we both made clear in our respective closings, this was never about money for Mr. Depp," Chew responded. "This was about restoring his reputation, and he's done that."

Listen below to an exclusive interview with Camille Vasquez on our daily podcast PEOPLE Every Day.

Chew's statements come after Heard's lawyer Elaine Bredehoft said on the Today show last week that her client would "absolutely not" be able to pay the money owed to Depp. (The Aquaman 2 actress will only have to pay $10.35 million total due to a Virginia law capping punitive damages . The judge reduced the amount, and Heard was awarded $2 million in damages against Depp in a defamation countersuit she brought against Depp.)

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Bredehoft also said Heard plans to appeal the verdict, and alleged that "there was so much evidence that did not come in" for the jury to review.

On Wednesday's episode of the Today show, Chew told Savannah Guthrie, "That was very disappointing to hear that, and to hear [Bredehoft] impugn the character of the jury. The evidence came in that should come in, and the judge was very particular to both sides."

Depp v. Heard trial at the Fairfax County Circuit Courthouse in Fairfax, Virginia, on May 27, 2022. - Actor Johnny Depp is suing ex-wife Amber Heard for libel after she wrote an op-ed piece in The Washington Post in 2018 referring to herself as a public figure representing domestic abuse
Depp v. Heard trial at the Fairfax County Circuit Courthouse in Fairfax, Virginia, on May 27, 2022. - Actor Johnny Depp is suing ex-wife Amber Heard for libel after she wrote an op-ed piece in The Washington Post in 2018 referring to herself as a public figure representing domestic abuse

getty (2) Johnny Depp; Amber Heard

Speaking about Bredehoft's mention of the U.K. libel suit Depp lost in November 2020, Vasquez said on Today, "It was a different process, and also, Mr. Depp and Mrs. Heard in this case were the parties; they had different disclosure obligations."

"We disagree," she stressed. "The overwhelming evidence that was presented in this case in Virginia far exceeded what was presented in the U.K. We believe the jury got it right."

Ahead of Chew and Vasquez's appearances on Today and GMA, a spokesperson for Heard said in a statement provided to PEOPLE, "It is as unseemly as it is unprofessional that Johnny Depp's legal team has chosen to do a victory lap for setting back decades of how women can be treated in the courtroom. What's next? A movie deal and merchandising?"

FAIRFAX, VIRGINIA - MAY 27: Actor Johnny Depp takes a break during his trial at a Fairfax County Courthouse on May 27, 2022 in Fairfax, Virginia. Closing arguments in the Depp v. Heard defamation trial, brought by Johnny Depp against his ex-wife Amber Heard, begins today. (Photo by Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images); FAIRFAX, VA - APRIL 21:(NY & NJ NEWSPAPERS OUT) Amber Heard departs following the recess for the day outside court during the Johnny Depp and Amber Heard civil trial at Fairfax County Circuit Court on April 21, 2022 in Fairfax, Virginia. Depp is seeking $50 million in alleged damages to his career over an op-ed Heard wrote in the Washington Post in 2018.(Photo by Ron Sachs/Consolidated News Pictures/Getty Images)
FAIRFAX, VIRGINIA - MAY 27: Actor Johnny Depp takes a break during his trial at a Fairfax County Courthouse on May 27, 2022 in Fairfax, Virginia. Closing arguments in the Depp v. Heard defamation trial, brought by Johnny Depp against his ex-wife Amber Heard, begins today. (Photo by Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images); FAIRFAX, VA - APRIL 21:(NY & NJ NEWSPAPERS OUT) Amber Heard departs following the recess for the day outside court during the Johnny Depp and Amber Heard civil trial at Fairfax County Circuit Court on April 21, 2022 in Fairfax, Virginia. Depp is seeking $50 million in alleged damages to his career over an op-ed Heard wrote in the Washington Post in 2018.(Photo by Ron Sachs/Consolidated News Pictures/Getty Images)

Kevin Dietsch/Getty ; Ron Sachs/Consolidated News Pictures/Getty Johnny Depp; Amber Heard

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Heard released a statement shortly after the verdict was read last week that said, "The disappointment I feel today is beyond words. I'm heartbroken that the mountain of evidence still was not enough to stand up to the disproportionate power, influence and sway of my ex-husband. I'm even more disappointed with what this verdict means for other women. It is a setback."

"It sets back the clock to a time when a woman who spoke up and spoke out could be publicly shamed and humiliated. It sets back the idea that violence against women is to be taken seriously. I believe Johnny's attorneys succeeded in getting the jury to overlook the key issue of Freedom of Speech and ignore evidence that was so conclusive that we won in the U.K.," she added. "I'm sad I lost this case. But I am sadder still that I seem to have lost a right I thought I had as an American — to speak freely and openly."

In his own statement released after the verdict was reached, Depp said, "Six years ago, my life, the life of my children, the lives of those closest to me, and also, the lives of the people who for many, many years have supported and believed in me were forever changed. All in the blink of an eye. False, very serious and criminal allegations were levied at me via the media, which triggered an endless barrage of hateful content, although no charges were ever brought against me. It had already traveled around the world twice within a nanosecond and it had a seismic impact on my life and my career. And six years later, the jury gave me my life back."

The Charlie and the Chocolate Factory actor mentioned he was "humbled" and "overwhelmed by the outpouring of love" he received during the trial, adding, "I hope that my quest to have the truth be told will have helped others, men or women, who have found themselves in my situation, and that those supporting them never give up."

"I also hope that the position will now return to innocent until proven guilty, both within the courts and in the media," Depp went on. "I wish to acknowledge the noble work of the Judge, the jurors, the court staff and the Sheriffs who have sacrificed their own time to get to this point, and to my diligent and unwavering legal team who did an extraordinary job in helping me to share the truth. The best is yet to come and a new chapter has finally begun. Veritas numquam perit. Truth never perishes."