A Virginia judge ruled against TMZ on Wednesday, allowing its former employee to testify in Johnny Depp’s giant ass defamation case against Amber Heard.
Judge Penney Azcarate struck down TMZ’s emergency motion seeking to prevent former field assignment manager Morgan Tremaine from being called as a rebuttal witness by Depp.
TMZ had argued that Tremaine shouldn’t be forced to give up information about a source who provided him with a video showing Depp yelling at Heard and slamming cabinet doors, which ran on the site in 2016, court papers showed.
“We are seeking to intervene to protect the relationship and their sources,” TMZ lawyer Charles Tobin told the judge.
“Whether that breached a nondisclosure agreement with Mr. Tremaine and [TMZ’s parent company] EHM is not germane to this matter and can be litigated in a separate matter if EHM so chooses.”
During his testimony later Wednesday, Tremaine told the jury about receiving the video of Depp and Heard’s alleged fight on Aug. 12, 2016, through TMZ’s email tip line.
He also described getting paparazzi to take photos of an “alleged bruise” on Heard’s face after the actress filed a temporary restraining order against Depp in May 2016.