Johnny Depp’s lawyers have been given a video from “an anonymous source” which they say shows his ex-wife Amber Heard “attacked” her sister, the High Court has heard.
The actor’s barrister said they received the video on Thursday night, after Whitney Henriquez said in court that her sister had never attacked her.
Mr Depp, 57, is suing the publisher of the Sun over an online article that labelled him a “wife beater”.
The paper insists it was accurate.
On Thursday, Ms Henriquez denied that Ms Heard had ever hit her, or that she was “frightened” of her sister.
She also gave evidence that she saw Mr Depp punch Ms Heard “really hard in the head… multiple times” in Los Angeles in March 2015, during the so-called “stairs incident”.
Ms Henriquez acknowledged that Ms Heard had punched Mr Depp on that occasion – but said it was only “in my defence” because Ms Heard believed Mr Depp was going to push Ms Henriquez down the stairs.
On the 14th day of the libel hearing in London, Mr Depp’s barrister, David Sherborne, told the court Ms Henriquez had “tailored” her evidence “to meet her sister’s evidence”.
He added that the Pirate Of The Caribbean star’s legal team had been provided with “material which we say demonstrates Ms Whitney [Henriquez] was lying yesterday”.
After Ms Henriquez gave evidence on Thursday, Mr Sherborne said the team was contacted by an individual “on the basis of being kept confidential”.
“We were contacted to explain that Ms Amber Heard had a history of violence and attacking people and this video, which was attached, of her sister Whitney was taken shortly after Amber Heard had attacked her, and Ms Whitney was filmed with people commenting on the bruises on her face and body,” he said.
He said that on Thursday, Ms Henriquez had been asked whether Ms Heard was violent and had said “the stairs incident” was a “one-off”.
Mr Sherborne continued that Ms Henriquez’s evidence about the incident in March 2015 was “the only occasion on which any other human being is supposed to have witnessed” Mr Depp being violent towards Ms Heard.
“The reliability of Ms Whitney is critical,” he added.
Mr Sherborne said Ms Heard’s evidence was that “she was never violent, she (has not) physically attacked Mr Depp… and the only occasion is said to be when she was acting in self-defence”.
“Evidence that Ms Heard was violent towards her sister is relevant to that issue,” he said.
He told the court: “We are entitled to put [allegations of] violence to Ms Whitney… we want to play the video tape to her and ask her about the incident in which Ms Amber Heard attacked her.”
Mr Sherborne added: “Had we received this before the end of yesterday, we would have been entitled to put [the allegation] to her and we would be entitled to rely on it in our closing submissions.”
Ms Henriquez’s cross-examination concluded on Thursday afternoon and she was due to be questioned by Sasha Wass QC, who represents the Sun’s publisher, News Group Newspapers (NGN), on Friday morning.
Ms Wass said she had not seen the video and had not been aware of it until Mr Sherborne told the court about it.
Mr Justice Nicol said he wanted to “press on” with other witnesses’ evidence and “if there is an opportunity for Ms Wass to see the video before we get to the issue, that would be desirable”.
Depp ‘dictated’ Heard’s work
Ms Heard’s acting coach Kristina Sexton has also been giving evidence by video link from Australia.
In a written witness statement, Ms Sexton said she had met the actress in 2009 and the pair became friends “quite quickly”.
She said Ms Heard became a “nervous wreck” about choosing film roles because she was “so worried” about Mr Depp’s reaction.
Ms Sexton alleged Mr Depp “dictated” his ex-wife’s work and told her not to take certain jobs because he did not want her doing “whore parts”.
Giving evidence, Ms Sexton confirmed to Mr Depp’s lawyer, Eleanor Laws QC, that she had not seen the actor “hit, kick or throw anything” at Ms Heard.
Under questioning from NGN’s lawyer, Ms Wass, Ms Sexton said she had previously been aware of “verbal fights” between the pair but in April 2016, Ms Heard told her Mr Depp had been hitting her and had tried to strangle her.
The libel case, which is due to finish next week, centres on an article published on the Sun’s website in April 2018 under the headline “Gone Potty: How can JK Rowling be ‘genuinely happy’ casting wife beater Johnny Depp in the new Fantastic Beasts film?”.
The article related to allegations made by Ms Heard, which Mr Depp denies.