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Johnny Depp tells court Heard ‘thrown a vodka bottle at me and took my finger off’

Voice Of EU



After two days on the stand in a $50 million defamation case brought by Johnny Depp against his former wife, the actor concluded his narrative of their marriage by testifying Wednesday that accusations of domestic violence brought by former wife Amber Heard had destroyed his career.

“When the allegations were made,” Depp told the court, “when they were circling the globe, telling people I was a drunken, cocaine-fueled menace who beat women, suddenly in my 50s, it’s over. You’re done.

“No matter the outcome of this trial, the second those accusations were made against me, and they metastasized as fodder for the media, I lost,” he said. “I lost, and I’ll carry that for the rest of my life.”

Depp’s courtroom exploration of his marriage, which will now be turned over to Heard’s lawyers for cross-examination, had earlier reached what in movie terms might be termed a climax as jurors in Fairfax, Virginia, viewed a photograph of the actor’s partially severed finger.

Depp testified that Heard had become enraged when he had started drinking in Australia during the filming of one of the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise films and had thrown a bottle of vodka at him, severing the top of his finger.

“Blood was pouring out,” he said. “I think I went into some sort of ? I don’t know what a nervous breakdown feels like, but that’s probably the closest that I’ve ever been. Nothing made sense.”

Depp said he had hidden in a bathroom, and was later taken to a hospital where he told doctors the digit had been caught in large accordion doors.

“I lied because … I didn’t want to disclose that it had been Ms Heard that had thrown a vodka bottle at me and took my finger off,” he told the court in his lawsuit against his former wife. “I didn’t want to get her in trouble.”

Heard listens as Depp testifies and a picture of an injury to his face is seen on a screen in court.


During Depp’s second day of testimony, jurors also heard of events that marked the the end of their relationship, soon after Depp’s mother died in hospital.

“I decided to call Amber and tell her that my mom had died that day. I said, ‘Look, I’ve made a decision and I think it’s the best thing. I’m going to file for divorce.’”

He said that he told Heard he would not cite irreconcilable differences or any abuse in the relationship and went to their penthouses to collect some of his things while Heard was at Coachella.

But Depp’s security guard told him it wasn’t a good time and showed the actor a photo on his phone of human waste on his side of the bed that was human fecal matter. “It was so outside, it was so bizarre and so grotesque that I could only laugh,” Depp said.

Asked whether it was possible that it belonged to the couple’s teacup Yorkies, the actor said no.

“I lived with those dogs for many years,” he said. “It was clear. That did not come from a dog. It just didn’t.”

Heard later explained that it was the dogs’ “fecal delivery”. Depp said he could not accept that. Later, he said, Heard was on the phone with the artist iO Tillet Wright saying “the wonderful point of just how funny it was” that Depp thought the delivery was hers.

Depp earlier recalled how Heard subjected him to an “endless parade of insults”, how he had “wanted to try to make it work, to help her. The Amber Heard I knew was not this opponent. She wasn’t my girl, she’d become my opponent.”

Frequently the focus of their conflict, he said, was his drinking. “She’d been pretty brutish about telling me I needed to stop drinking,” Depp said, telling the actor he was “weak, a complete mess, an alcoholic ruining everything”.

Depp said the exchanges frequently escalated into full-scale arguments. “Her need for conflict and violence erupts out of nowhere,” he said. “I learned to deal with it exactly as I did as a child, which was retreat.”


The court in Fairfax, Virginia, has yet to hear Heard’s version of events but over a day and a half of Depp’s testimony so far, jurors have been given a tour of an unstable celebrity marriage coloured by addiction.

Depp is suing Heard for $50 million, accusing her of defamation after she alleged violent domestic abuse.

At issue throughout much of their marriage, Depp said, was Heard’s anger at his inability to stop using substances. At one point, he convinced Heard to stay at a bungalow at the Beverly Hills hotel while he attempted to come off a brand of potent prescription opioid painkillers, under the care of his doctor.

“You won’t have to sit around ‘Mr Shakey’,” he told the jury he had said to his wife. He continued in his second day of testimony: “She wasn’t happy with it but she did eventually leave. So for a few days I sat around in a metal chair with one song on a loop so I could focus on the lyrics and the power of the song to help me get through it.”

On another, after returning from Boston where he had been filming the movie Black Massin in May 2014, Depp said he paid for Heard and her friends to stay at the Chateau Marmont hotel in Los Angeles, while he again attempted to kick his habit.

He had not been drinking to excess on the plane, where Heard alleges that an assault took place, but had taken two painkillers and locked himself in the bathroom to avoid her badgering, he said.

Depp testified that he had suggested Heard also stop drinking and taking drugs, which Depp has itemized as wine, ecstasy, mushrooms and “a high-velocity speed”.

Through this extended life story, Depp has weaved in aspects of his history with other women. Heard has said that the first time she was assaulted was when Depp slapped her in 2013 after she mocked a tattoo that had once said “Winona Forever” – a reference to the actor and former girlfriend Winona Ryder – but had since been changed to “Wino Forever”.

“It didn’t happen,” he said of the alleged assault. “Why would I take such great offense to someone making fun of a tattoo on my body? That allegation never made any sense to me.” Heard, he suggested was jealous that Depp had not had himself inscribed with her name.

Despite the difficulties in their brief marriage, Depp maintains that he never assaulted Heard, the allegation that goes to the heart of the defamation he claims she made in a 2018 Washington Post column.

On Wednesday, he repeated that denial saying that his disputes with Heard would never cause him to hit her. “Violence isn’t necessary,” Depp said. “Why would you hit someone to make them agree with you?”

The trial continues. – Guardian News and Media 2022

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Bluewater grows its entertainment offer (GB)

Voice Of EU



Landsec has announced the opening of a third ‘UK first’ attraction at Bluewater, Kent as the destination expands its partnership with Hangloose Adventures. Skydive, a free-fall experience not found anywhere else in Europe, and the UK’s only outdoor skydive machine has opened at the centre. It follows on from Europe’s biggest purpose-built giant swing, standing at 46-metre tall, which opened at Bluewater earlier this month.  


The announcement builds on a successful first year for Hangloose’s initial attraction Skywire, the longest zip wire in England, which has welcomed 30,000 guests since launching at Bluewater last June. Landsec will continue to work with Hangloose to expand its offering, with up to five more experiences set to open at the centre by 2024: a bungee tower, giant slide, clip and climb, waterdrop boulding wall, and Via Ferrata, a route-marked climb using metal rails and rungs embedded in Bluewater’s cliff walls.


Mark Warne, Brand Account Director F&B and Leisure at Landsec commented: “Delivering new experiences which are unique to Bluewater is central to our overall offer for guests. Hangloose’s innovative concept raises the bar when it comes to leisure attractions and draws guests from across the UK to Kent. By partnering with Hangloose to grow their business and create shared value, we’ll be able to give guests even more exciting experiences every time they visit.”


Brian Phelps, MD of Hangloose Adventure, said: “Since the beginning, we’ve worked closely with Landsec to grow our leisure concept and drive performance, putting us in a unique position where we’re able to expand our offer after only a year. We’ve enjoyed great success at Bluewater so far and are already thinking about how we can provide even bigger and better experiences in the future.”

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Author with immaculate house offers ten tips for a clean home

Voice Of EU



Is this the secret to NEVER having to clean? Houseproud author claims she saves hours by sticking to a ten-step mantra – including banning chairs in bedrooms, wiping as you cook and only ironing shirts and dresses

  • UK writer Natali Juste Simmonds says she’s cracked keeping a home clean, by sticking to a few simple ground rules – and making sure family members comply
  • She shared top ten tips for keeping a home spotless with her 20,000 followers
  • Among them are ditching a toilet brush in the bathroom, not having a chair in the bedroom and cleaning  the kitchen while you cook

A houseproud author has revealed her ten essential tips for keeping a house spotless – saying simple ground rules for family members and cleaning as you go means never wasting time on dull chores. 

Writer Natali Juste Simmonds, who was born in the UK but now lives in the Netherlands, penned her top ways to keep on top of cleaning on Twitter, saying she has time to focus on her writing because she follows her own advice about dodging ‘thankless’ cleaning tasks. 

The author of a series of paranormal romance novels told her 20,000 followers on Twitter: ‘I know so many people who spend hours cleaning up after their family every day, but I refuse to. 

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UK writer Natali Juste Simmonds says she's cracked keeping a home clean, by sticking to a few simple ground rules - and making sure family members comply

UK writer Natali Juste Simmonds says she’s cracked keeping a home clean, by sticking to a few simple ground rules – and making sure family members comply

‘It’s boring and thankless. I prefer to write. Yet my house is spotless. Here are 10 ways to keep on top of s*** so you don’t have to clean for hours.’ 

Sharing her ‘tough love’ mantra, she said that the key to keeping a home clean is making sure every family member is engaged, saying learning how to tidy is a lifeskill that everyone needs – and no-one should get away with not doing it. 

Natali wrote: ‘Train everyone in the house to do the following (cats are the exception). After a while these habits will become routine, but you MUST stick to them and make sure no one is let off the hook.’ 

Among the tips are filling a bag with things that are in the wrong place at the end of every day and placing them back where they belong. 

Tidy home, tidy mind: The Netherlands-based writer shared her top ten tips for keeping a home spotless with her 20,000 followers on Twitter - saying that making sure everyone in the house pulls their weight is key (Pictured: An office area in Simmonds' home)

Tidy home, tidy mind: The Netherlands-based writer shared her top ten tips for keeping a home spotless with her 20,000 followers on Twitter – saying that making sure everyone in the house pulls their weight is key (Pictured: An office area in Simmonds’ home)

The writer also claims having a toilet brush doesn’t help keep a loo clean and dousing it with bleach instead is a more reliable way to ensure it’s sparkling. 

And getting used to wiping down mirrors after using a sink also helps, she claims, writing: ‘Keep a dry cloth next to the bathroom sink. Every time someone uses the taps or brushes their teeth, wipe down the counter and mirror. Takes literally 2 seconds. No cleaning toothpaste stains off counters.’

Teaching kids to pull their weight around the house is key to success, and equality reigns supreme in the Simmonds house. 

Among her top tips are ditching a toilet brush in the bathroom - using just bleach instead; not having a chair in the bedroom - to prevent people leaving clothes on them - and cleaning the kitchen while you cook (Pictured: Simmonds' very tidy office)

Among her top tips are ditching a toilet brush in the bathroom – using just bleach instead; not having a chair in the bedroom – to prevent people leaving clothes on them – and cleaning the kitchen while you cook (Pictured: Simmonds’ very tidy office)

‘If one kid lays the table, the other clears. If one hangs out the washing, the other collects. I don’t say “I need help with dinner” I say “who will chop the veg and who will wash up?” Its called a presumed close. I have no option, why should others in my house?’

The author, who has written books including the Indigo Chronicles trilogy and the Blood Web series, admits that having a cleaner is still useful…because they can help keep on top of areas where grime quickly builds, including fridges and ovens – but she suggests ditching a takeaway a week to cover the cost. 


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DIA Group closes 25 Minipreco stores in Portugal

Voice Of EU



DIA Group has closed 25 Minipreco stores in Portugal, resulting in the loss of approximately 159 jobs. The retailer said the closures are the result of ‘the effort to adapt, modernise and balance the operations of DIA Portugal, with the aim of better preparing the company for current and future challenges arising from the current economic situation in the country,’ according to media reports. In the last two years, the multinational company operating in Spain, Portugal, Brazil, and Argentina, accumulated losses of over €620m.


In Portugal, net sales reached €283.1m in the first half, 4.5% below the €296.3m generated in the same period last year, due to the reduction of stores and mobility restrictions. DIA Group confirmed its intention to continue to invest in Portugal. The company hopes to adjust its operation to the current reality in order to ensure the future success of the company.

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