A recent ruling by a Los Angeles judge pushed back Johnny Depp’s court trial against his former lawyers, whom Depp is suing for malpractice, by several months.
According to court documents obtained by entertainment news site The Blast, a Los Angeles judge ordered the trial between Depp and the firm of Bloom Hergott Diemer Rosenthal LaViolette Feldman Schenkman & Goodman, whom Depp is suing for $30 million, to be moved from it’s initial May 6th date to later this year, September 16th.
According to the judge, the reason for this delay is due to fighting between the respective legal teams regarding document submissions, as well as multiple depositions which have yet to be submitted to the court. The judge also ruled on issues raised by the law firm claiming Depp was not turning over pertinent information and was not answering fully, ruling in varying favor of both the parties and ordering Depp to give more detailed answers to specified questions due to the complicated nature of the case:
“This case requires the parties to unwind the tangled affairs of Plaintiff Depp, his various entities, and his lawyers, going back several years. Plaintiff’s inclination to incorporate by reference and tell Defendant Firm to, in essence, ‘figure it out,’ is understandable. However, the very number of parties and issues present in this case calls for a more meticulous approach. Although shorthand references are easier, they are by necessity less clear.”
Adam Waldman, Depp’s lawyer commented on the recent rulings, telling The Blast:
“Bloom is accused among other things of a failure to supervise the fraudulent activity of the Mandel Brothers/TMG, Mr. Depp’s former business managers who are under multiple federal criminal investigations and whose offices were raided by the FBI in June 2017. Judge Green agreed to move their trial from May to September, and ruled that Bloom is entitled to Mandel’s sealed documents.”
In the same statement, Waldman also criticized the firm’s conduct, particularly in reference to the ongoing situation revolving around Depp’s ex-wife Amber Heard and her claims of abuse at the hands of Depp:
“Part of Bloom’s defense is that he did a good job on Mr. Depp’s divorce. But the facts are these: some of Mr. Depp’s legal dream team of five Hollywood lawyers reviewed the entire surveillance video library taken of Ms. Heard, her friends, Elon Musk and others captured by 24 surveillance cameras in the Eastern Columbia Building and the 87 surveillance videos that these lawyers set aside. Then Mr. Depp’s lawyers took sworn declarations from multiple eyewitnesses. Some on Mr. Depp’s legal team secretly represented Elon Musk. Some of Mr. Depp’s legal team then hid for nearly three years this exculpatory evidence from Mr. Depp that disproved the malicious hoax perpetrated against him by Amber Heard.”
Depp first filed suit against Bloom Hergott Diemer Rosenthal LaViolette Feldman Schenkman & Goodman in 2017, alleging that members of their legal team who were employed by Depp conspired with Depp’s former business managers to defraud Depp of millions. The law firm has previously filed a counter-suit claiming that Depp has failed to pay his former lawyers for work performed, though Depp denies this charge.