Washington [US], May 25 (ANI): On Tuesday, TMZ filed an emergency request in Virginia to prevent Johnny Depp from bringing one of its former workers to testify in his defamation case.
According to Variety, in the motion, TMZ is attempting to protect a confidential source who provided the outlet with a video of Depp yelling at ex-wife Amber Heard and slamming cabinets. The jury was shown the video early in the trial.
Depp's team has indicated that Morgan Tremaine, a former TMZ field assignment manager, will be called as a witness on Wednesday. They have not stated what questions will be posed to Tremaine.
The lawyers for TMZ contended that the source's identity should be protected under Virginia law's journalist's privilege. Tremaine's evidence, according to the publication, is immaterial to the matter of whether Depp and Heard defamed one other.
During her cross-examination of Heard, Depp's lawyer, Camille Vasquez, argued that she had leaked the film and that the outlet had paid her for it. She said, "I didn't do that," Heard testified. "I had nothing to do with that."
When Heard went to court in May 2016 to obtain a restraining order against Depp, Vasquez suspected that Heard's team had tipped off TMZ. Heard expressed surprise that photographers were present, and speculated that it was Depp's divorce lawyer, Laura Wasser, who had tight ties to TMZ.
TMZ's lawyer argued in the motion that Tremaine had nothing to do with the video's receipt and that any testimony he might give about the confidential source would be based on "rumour and conjecture."
"TMZ promised this source that it would maintain their confidentiality and would not disclose their name or other information about them," wrote the outlet's attorneys. "TMZ makes such promises of confidentiality, from time to time, so that it may publish information in the public interest, and it relies on the journalist's privilege protecting the identity of confidential sources to do so", as reported by Variety. (ANI)