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Johnny Depp takes stand and testifies at defamation trial

Johnny Depp has testified in his $50 million defamation trial against ex-wife Amber Heard, claiming that he is telling the "truth" for the sake of his children and family.

The lawsuit stems from an opinion piece written by Heard for the Washington Post in which she describes herself as a victim of domestic violence. He denies any wrongdoing. Heard has responded with a counterclaim.

The civil trial in Virginia, which is being closely watched, is now in its second week. The jury heard testimony from the celebrity ex-former couple's therapist, who described how Depp and Heard engaged in "mutual abuse," as well as medical personnel who treated the actor while he was detoxing from opiates.

Johnny Depp told the jury on Tuesday that the truth is all that matters now, and that Amber Heard's allegations of abuse ruined long-standing relationships he had in Hollywood.

Johnny Depp denies ever hitting Amber Heard

"I never struck Ms Heard in that way, nor have I struck any woman in my life," he testified, adding that "her accusations sorta permeated the industry".

I never struck Ms Heard in that way, nor have I struck any woman in my life

Johnny Depp

So far, the trial has concentrated on Depp's demeanor and whether he was ever verbally or physically abusive to Amber Heard. Johnny Depp's lawyers have accused his ex-wife, who is also an actor, of putting on the "performance of her life" in her descriptions of alleged abuse.

The actor began his testimony by saying that Heard's claims are "not founded on any kind of truth."

His lawyer then asked him to describe his childhood in Kentucky and the abuse he suffered at the hands of his mother. "I could see when she [his mother] was about to head into a situation where she was going to get riled up and someone was going to get it. And generally it was me," he said.

The trial is expected to last at least six weeks, and jurors have already heard contradictory accounts of Mr. Depp and Ms. Heard's relationship. So far, Johnny Depp has been portrayed by Amber Heard's team as an abusive partner who is prone to drug and alcohol binges.

Depp's team has characterized Heard's allegations of domestic violence as a "hoax" and a calculated attempt to tarnish his reputation.

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