West Ham defender Kurt Zouma has been sentenced to 180 hours of community service after he pleaded guilty to kicking his cat. Zouma was also banned from keeping cats for five years and was ordered to pay £9,000 in court costs. The footage of the incident was posted by his brother Yoan Zouma in February. Yoan was sentenced to 140 hours of community service as well after the footage of a Bengal cat being flung across the kitchen came out. He admitted to two counts of causing unnecessary suffering to a protected animal.

“Kurt Zouma is determined to chastise or carry out some sort of retribution for the damage caused,” Ms. Stevens said. “I don’t think hitting a cat like that is OK – don’t bother coming today.”

“West Ham United wishes to make clear that we condemn in the strongest terms any form of animal abuse or cruelty. This type of behavior is unacceptable and is not in line with the values of the football club,” West Ham said in a statement after a video emerged of Kurt Zouma kicking a cat. “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. Kurt 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 the chance to learn from his mistake and move on.”

“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,” RSPCA chief inspectorate officer Dermot Murphy said. 3

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