According to the “New York Times,” Johnny Depp’s dog smuggling incident in 2015, continues to be an entertaining debate with the Australian government. While filming the latest installment of “Pirates of the Caribbean,” Depp’s wife Amber Heard, flew into an Australian airport, by private jet, but forgot to claim their two Yorkshire terriers with customs. At this moment, a simple lapse in protocol has turned into an international scandal. A year later, the event is back in the media because the case has reached its conclusion in Spring of 2016.
The Australian government depicted the incident as a violation; since Heard did not claim the dogs, it was viewed as attempting smuggling with the intent to deceive the government. The situation was complicated, but the Australian government’s next step changed the situation into an international debate.
“Time” explained that Australia has an exceptional environment and prides itself on the limited number of contaminants and diseases, which is why all animals must be quarantined upon arrival, to ensure they do not bring anything into the country. To maintain these standards, Australia has put rules and regulations into place and enforce those same rules and laws.
This case about the law, which is why the Australian government made an example of Heard’s actions. This becomes even more complicated because Heard flew into Australia by private jet. People who fly by private jet are able to arrive and depart whenever they want with little interference.
The Australian government decided to give Depp an ultimatum; he could either send his dogs back to the United States, or the dogs would be euthanized. “Newsweek” claims, the ultimatum enraged Depp because he felt the dog smuggling incident was a minor issue, but made jokes about being forced to smuggle his dogs back home.
Depp returned his dogs to his home in California, and finished the fifth installment of the “Pirates of the Caribbean.” It was not until Spring of 2016, that the case in Australia came to its conclusion. During the case there was limited coverage, however, the punishment handed down has made the entire situation newsworthy all over again. Depp was required to make a public apology, via an online video, and pay a fine. Those who viewed the video have stated it was one of Depp’s best performances because it was quite clear he looked sincere, however, there are many who believe that he was not.
Depp may have apologized for Heard’s actions but it is quite clear he was not ready to apologize for his actions. Depp was recently on “Jimmy Kimmel Live,” where he continued to make the dog smuggling incident public knowledge and went as far as insulting the Australian Prime Minister. Depp also made jokes about the dog smuggling incident during his premiere for “Alice Through the Looking Glass,” stating he did not smuggle his dogs into the United Kingdom because he was aware it was a bad idea.
Similar to other celebrities, Depp and Heard did not make their own travel arrangements, which should have included the appropriate documentation for their dogs. It has been reported that whoever did make the arrangements filed the paperwork correctly, which should have made it clear that Heard had no intention of smuggling the dogs into Australia but simply forgot to stop by customs.
By Kristina Lasher
Edited by Jeanette Smith
NY Times: Johnny Depp and Australian Official Still Snarling a Year Later
Time: Why Johnny Depp Is Picking Fights with Australia’s Deputy Prime Minister
Newsweek: JOHNNY DEPP STARS IN ‘WAR ON TERRIER’: THE STORY OF HIS FEUD WITH AUSTRALIA’S BARNABY JOYCE
Image Courtesy of Asim Bharwani’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License