Amber Heard takes stand in blockbuster defamation trial: 'I struggle to find the words for how painful this is'
US actress Amber Heard speaks with her legal team during a lunch break at the Fairfax County Circuit. Court (ELIZABETH FRANTZ POOL/AFP)

"Aquaman" star Amber Heard testified on Wednesday that the defamation case brought against her by her former husband, Johnny Depp, is the "most painful and difficult thing" she has ever experienced.

"I struggle to find the words for how painful this is," the 36-year-old Heard told the jury hearing the defamation suit in Fairfax County Circuit Court.

"This is the most painful and difficult thing I have ever gone through," she said. "It's horrible for me to sit here for weeks and relive everything."

Depp filed suit against Heard over an op-ed she wrote for The Washington Post in December 2018 in which she described herself as a "public figure representing domestic abuse."

Heard did not name the 58-year-old Depp in the Post op-ed, but the "Pirates of the Caribbean" sued her for implying he was a domestic abuser and is seeking $50 million in damages.

The Texas-born Heard countersued, asking for $100 million and claiming she suffered "rampant physical violence and abuse" at his hands.

A psychologist hired by Heard's legal team testified on Tuesday that the actress suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) as a result of "intimate partner violence" from Depp.

Dawn Hughes' findings contradicted those of a doctor who appeared as a witness for Depp, Shannon Curry, who said the actress did not have PTSD.

Hughes said Heard had reported a number of "physically violent behaviors" by Depp and a "number of incidents of sexual violence."

"He pushed her, he shoved her, he slapped her with the front of his hand and the back of his hand," she said. "He choked her, he slammed her into the wall, he pushed her and she fell down. He kicked her in the back."

Depp, during four days of testimony earlier in the trial taking place in Fairfax, Virginia, denied ever being physically abusive towards Heard and claimed that she was the one who was frequently violent.

His lawyers put experts on the stand who testified that he lost millions because of the accusations, including a $22.5-million payday for the fifth installment of the "Pirates" franchise.

Depp filed the defamation complaint in the United States after losing a separate libel case in London in November 2020 that he brought against The Sun for calling him a "wife-beater."

Depp, a three-time Oscar nominee, and Heard met in 2009 on the set of the film "The Rum Diary" and were married in February 2015. Their divorce was finalized two years later.

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