Kurt Zouma of West Ham United was sentenced to 180 hours of Community Service for kicking a cat


Kurt Zouma, West Ham defender, was sentenced to 180 hours of community service on Wednesday after admitting to kicking and slapping his cat.

Kurt Zouma of West Ham United sentenced to 180 hours of Community Service after kicking cat in a video

The 27-year-old France international was also barred from having cats for five years by a judge at Thames Magistrates Court in east London.

In February, a video that showed Zouma volleying a cat across his kitchen before tossing a pair of shoes at it went viral, causing widespread outrage.

“I’ll vow I’ll kill it,” he was heard saying in the video while slapping the Bengal cat’s head. Laughing emoticons were used in the video, which was uploaded on Snapchat.

It resulted in a £250,000 ($315,000, 294,000 euros) fine from West Ham. He missed out on a lucrative sponsorship agreement as well as selection for the French national team.

The Premier League star came to court flanked by muscular bodyguards, ready to confront a mob of waiting reporters and a cat impersonator.

The lone demonstrator gave him a thumbs down as he entered.

Zouma and his younger brother Yoan, who filmed the incident, were admonished by district judge Susan Holdham that their conduct were “disgraceful and reprehensible.”

“You must be aware that others look up to you and many young people aspire to emulate you,” she said but accepted that both expressed “genuine remorse”.

Kurt Zouma of West Ham United sentenced to 180 hours of Community Service after kicking cat in a video

Kurt Zouma pled guilty last month to two counts of causing needless suffering to an animal under the Animal Welfare Act.

He was also ordered to pay over £9,000 in court costs in addition to the community sentence and a restriction on having cats.

Yoan Zouma, 24, pleaded guilty to one count of assisting, abetting, counseling, or procuring his older brother to commit a crime.

He was given a community service term of 140 hours.

Yoan, a lower-league player, gave the film to a woman with whom he was supposed to go on a date, but she canceled the date after seeing it.

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“I don’t think hitting a cat like that is OK — don’t bother coming today,” she told him.

The brothers’ conduct were described as “shocking” by the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, which brought the case.

“We hope this case will serve as a reminder that all animals deserve to be treated with kindness, compassion and respect, and that we will not tolerate cruelty by anybody,” said RSPCA chief inspectorate officer Dermot Murphy.

Following the incident, West Ham stated that it “strongly condemns any sort of animal abuse or cruelty.”

“This type of behaviour is unacceptable and is not in line with the values of the football club,” it added in a statement.

Kurt Zouma of West Ham United sentenced to 180 hours of Community Service after kicking cat in a video

“Within 48 hours of the footage emerging, we fined Kurt the maximum available to the club,” it said. The money had been donated to animal welfare groups.


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