Kurt Zouma Given 180 Hours Of Community Service For Kicking His Cat
The West Ham United defender, Kurt Zouma, was sentenced to 180 hours of community service after pleading guilty to kicking and slapping his cat.
The 27-year-old was also barred from owning cats for the next five years.
In May, Kurt Zouma was found guilty of two animal welfare act violations at a hearing at Thames Magistrates’ Court.
At the 15-minute hearing, Zouma’s brother Yoan, who plays for Dagenham and Redbridge, was ordered to perform 140 hours of community service.
The case was brought after an investigation by the RSPCA.
Yoan pled guilty to one count of assisting, abetting, counseling, or procuring his older brother to commit a crime.
“Both of you took part in this disgraceful and reprehensible act with this pet cat,” said district judge Susan Holdham.
“The cat looked up to you to care for its needs.” On that February date, you did not provide for its needs. You must be aware that others look up to you and many young people aspire to emulate you.”
Yoan, 24, filmed the incident at his older brother’s home and posted it on Snapchat with ‘laughing’ emojis on February 6.
The video also showed Kurt kicking the Bengal cat across his kitchen, before throwing a pair of shoes at it and slapping its head, while the video also showed him saying “I swear I’ll kill it”.
The court heard Yoan, whose contract with Dagenham and Redbridge has been extended, had 80 followers on Snapchat, and only five accounts viewed it before it was deleted a few minutes after being posted.
Kurt Zouma was also told to pay court costs of nearly £9,000 in addition to the 12-month community order.
“We are pleased there has been swift justice in this awful case and our focus now is matching these beautiful cats to the loving homes they deserve,” said RSPCA chief inspectorate officer Dermot Murphy.
“This case sends a really clear message that animals should never be treated like this, and posting videos of animals being harmed on social media for likes is abhorrent.
“We believe teaching children to treat animals with kindness will lead to a more compassionate society. We need positive role models to help us do that.”
West Ham hope Kurt Zouma can ‘learn from his mistake and move on’
The hearing in May had heard that West Ham had fined the player £250,000 and he had lost a “substantial” sponsorship deal with sportswear firm adidas.
“West Ham United wishes to make clear that we condemn in the strongest terms any form of animal abuse or cruelty,” said a statement from the Premier League club after the sentencing.
“This type of behavior is unacceptable and is not in line with the values of the football club.
“Within 48 hours of the footage emerging, we fined Kurt the maximum available to the club.
“Every single penny of this money is now with a number of deserving charities, all dedicated to animal welfare.”
The Hammers added: “Kurt Zouma admitted at the earliest opportunity that what he did was wrong. He has apologized without reservation.
“We hope that now the court has reached its decision, every one will allow Kurt Zouma the chance to learn from his mistake and move on.”
Kurt Happy Zouma is a French professional footballer who plays as a center-back for Premier League club West Ham United and the France national team. Zouma began his career at Saint-Étienne, making his professional debut aged 16 and winning the Coupe de la Ligue with the club in 2013.
Kurt Zouma joined West Ham United for £29.8 million signing a four-year contract in 2021. On 16 September, he made his West Ham debut, in the Europa League in a 2–0 win over Dinamo Zagreb. On 7 November, he scored his first goal for West Ham, the winning goal in a 3–2 victory over Liverpool.