Authorities in Australia unexpectedly announced that they would be taking no further action against American actress Amber Heard over allegations she brought her two dogs into Australia illegally in 2015. File Photo by Hugo Philpott/UPI | License Photo
Aug. 23 (UPI) -- American actor Amber Heard will face no further legal action over bringing her two dogs into Australia illegally in 2015, authorities said.
The country's top prosecutor dropped the case after reviewing evidence from a joint investigation into the allegations against Heard by the department of agriculture and overseas agencies, the Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Department said in a news release Tuesday.
"A brief of evidence was referred to the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions, who has made the decision not to prosecute in this instance having applied the Prosecution Policy of the Commonwealth," the department said.
Heard was accused of bringing dogs Pistol and Boo, both Yorkshire terriers, into the country without declaring them in contravention of Australia's strict biosecurity laws on importing animals and farm products.
Heard who had been under investigation since 2015 recorded an apology video with then-husband Johnny Depp in 2016 and paid a fine.
But authorities reopened their investigation after allegations emerged in Depp's 2020 libel case against a British newspaper that Heard may have lied about being ignorant of Australia's strict rules requiring dogs spend six months in quarantine.
Former Australian Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce, who was in office at the time, on Wednesday rebuked the authorities' decision to drop the case saying Heard and Depp had committed a crime "without a doubt."
"Johnny Depp and Amber Heard were part of a process where false statutory declarations were signed," Joyce said. "This was a crime committed in Australia without a shadow of a doubt. The dogs weren't a figment of our imagination. They were really there.
"That really is how a disease such as rabies comes into Australia."
At the time, Joyce threatened to have the dogs put down if Heard and Depp did not leave the country and take the animals with them.
The two have since taken potshots at each other repeatedly with Heard mocking the former prime minister in 2021 by naming her latest dog "Barnaby Joyce" while Joyce said in 2022 that he found it irritating that Australian authorities wouldn't extradite Heard over the perjury claims.