Johnny Depp’s victory over Amber Heard in his multi-million trial last week has proven a win for more than the former Pirates of the Caribbean actor.
Shot in the spotlight for her searing cross examinations and closing arguments during the six-week proceedings in Virginia, attorney Camille Vasquez has been promoted.
Co-lead lawyer for Depp with Ben Chew, Vasquez has made partner at Brown Rudnick after less than four years.
“We are delighted to welcome Camille to the partnership,” said Brown Rudnick chair and CEO William Baldiga said today in what is as much a triumph for the national firm as it is for Orange County-based litigator Vasquez. “Historically, we have reserved this announcement for the end of our fiscal year. But Camille’s performance during the Johnny Depp trial proved to the world that she was ready to take this next step now. We are incredibly proud of her and look forward to what she will accomplish as our newest partner.”
As is customary in such occasions, there was delight to be shared.
“I am delighted that Brown Rudnick has given me its full vote of confidence by having me join the partnership,” the much in demand Vasquez herself said. “I’m proud of the uniquely talented team I’ve had the privilege to lead, which exemplified teamwork and collaboration, and I look forward to continuing to represent Brown Rudnick’s culture of excellence,” the 37-year old 2010 Southwestern Law School graduate added.
The uptick in Vasquez’s status at Brown Rudnick comes as a number of high profile firms and agencies have expressed interested in either poaching or representing the literally made-for-TV lawyer.
Seen laughing with and hugging Depp throughout the trial that started on April 11, Vasquez proved a significant steely foe for Heard and her defense team. While starting off weak in opening arguments and at times in the trial seeming to cross the line in terms of disparaging or even mocking the Aquaman actress’ allegation of domestic and sexual abuse at Depp’s hands, Vasquez’s later poise and precision proved powerful in and outside the courtroom.
A big hit with the self-described “Deppford Wives” fanbase, Vasquez told the assembled loyalist and media on June 1 that “today’s verdict confirms what we have said from the beginning, that the claims against Johnny Depp are defamatory and unsupported by any evidence. She went on to say outside the Fairfax County Courthouse that “we are grateful, so grateful to the jury for their careful deliberation, to the judge and the court staff who have devoted an enormous amount of time and resources towards this case.”
The day after the verdict was delivered, Heard main lawyer have said that the self-described “heartbroken” actress plans to appeal the ruling. The seven-person Virginia jury, which found in favor of all of Depp’s defamation claims and awarded him more than $10 million in damages. Heard succeeded on one of her counterclaim points and was awarded $2 million.
Depp sued his ex-wife and Rum Diary co-star for $50 million in March 2019 over a late 2018 Washington Post op-ed the actress wrote about becoming “a public figure representing domestic abuse.” Though the mainly ACLU-crafted item in the Jeff Bezos-owned newspaper never actually mentioned Depp by name, the litigious actor claimed it “devastated” his already waning career. In court filing and on the stand, Depp also claimed that he was in fact the one who was abused in the relationship.
Unsuccessful in having the case dismissed or moved out of Virginia, Heard in the summer of 2020 countersued for $100 million. That action came months before Depp’s UK libel case against The Sun tabloid for calling him a “wife beater” proved dramatically unsuccessful in November 2020.
Vasquez was not a participating attorney in the UK action.
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