The new love interest of Johnny Depp, who worked on his UK libel case


Hollywood actor Johnny Depp is quite the man of romance.

After rumours of him being romantically involved with Camille Vasquez, who represented the actor in the Johnny Depp vs Amber Heard trial, the Pirates of the Caribbean actor is reportedly dating another one of his lawyers, Joelle Rich.

Joelle Rich represented Depp during his UK libel case.

Here’s what we know about Joelle Rich and her relationship with Johnny Depp.

Who is Joelle Rich?

A lawyer by profession, Joelle Rich is based in London where she is a partner at the international law firm called Schillings.

As per her bio on the company’s website, Rich’s job profile includes helping people to “protect their privacy and reputations”. She has expertise in libel, privacy and copyright disputes. She “works to defend clients’ reputations against false and defamatory allegations in print, online and on social media.”

Before becoming a lawyer, Rich studied at the University of Birmingham from 2003 to 2006, according to shethepeople.

Last year, Rich also represented Meghan Markle in a case against the publishers of the Mail on Sunday.

A mother of two, Joelle is currently married but estranged from her husband.

How did the romance between Joelle and Depp brew?

According to a report by US Weekly, the chemistry between the two are “off the charts”.

While Rich represented Johnny Depp during his UK libel case, she was not on Depp’s legal team for the Virginia defamation trial against Amber Heard earlier this year.

However, she still made an appearance during the defamation case, providing support to Depp and at one point was also seen hugging Depp’s attorney Camille Vasquez inside the courtroom.

A mother of two, Joelle is currently married but estranged from her husband. On 16 May, during the hearing, she was seen hugging Depp’s lawyer Camille Vasquez. AFP

“There was no professional obligation for her being there. It was personal,” a source told US Weekly.

She was also photographed with Depp and his legal team exiting the courthouse on 19 May.

What was the UK libel case?

Johnny Depp sued News Group Newspapers (NGN), the parent company of The Sun in 2018, for libel over a story that called him a “wife beater”.

Following a three-week trial that took place in July last year, Justice Nicol dismissed his libel claim, finding that the column that called him a “wife beater” was “substantially true”, according to The Guardian.

After the ruling, Depp asked the court of appeal to grant him permission to challenge the order. However, the court refused Depp permission to appeal.

Joelle Rich, who was at the time representing Depp, said the evidence presented in the hearing “further demonstrates that there are clear and objective reasons to seriously question the decision in the UK court.”

Was Depp dating Camille Vasquez?

During the US defamation case, rumours began to swirl about Camille Vasquez and Johnny Depp dating.

A professional lawyer and an entrepreneur who started working with Brown Rudnick LLP as an associate attorney in 2018, Camille represented Depp in his defamation suit against ex-wife Amber Heard.

Johnny Depp is dating his lawyer Its not who you think it is

Camille represented Depp in his latest defamation suit against ex-wife Amber Heard. AFP

Her claim to fame was this case, after which speculations of him having a romantic relationship with the actor spread like wildfire.

However, according to a report by Marca, both Vasquez and Depp said that their relationship did not go beyond friendship. For her, the idea of having a romantic relationship with a client is “unprofessional”.

“I care a lot about my clients, and obviously we’ve become very close,” Camille Vasquez told People. “But when I say we, I mean the whole team, and of course that includes Johnny.”

Camille further said, “It’s also an unethical accusation to make. It’s sexist.”

What was the Depp vs Heard case?

The case began in April 2022.

After six weeks of testimony and three days of deliberation, a US jury found Amber Heard responsible for defaming ex-husband Johnny Depp with an article in the Washington Post in which she claimed she was a victim of domestic abuse.

Although, the Virginia court held both the parties liable for defamation, the jury sided more closely with Depp, awarding him $15 million (almost Rs 121 crore) in damages while awarding only $2 million (Rs 16.22crore) to Heard, according to Vogues.

After the verdict was announced, Camille Vasquez was seen turning to her colleagues with tears in her eyes. Speaking outside the courthouse after the victory, Vasquez said, “Today’s verdict confirms what we have said from the beginning – that the claims against Johnny Depp are defamatory and unsupported by any evidence. We are grateful, so grateful to the jury for their careful deliberation,” according to a report by Express UK.

With inputs from agencies

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