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Kurt Zouma

West Ham defender Zouma charged by RSPCA over cat abuse video

11:29 PM SGT 16/3/22
Kurt Zouma West Ham 2021-22
The Dagenham and Redbridge man has had his club suspension lifted amid the news that he is to be charged

Kurt Zouma and his brother Yoan have been charged by the RSPCA in relation to February's video that showed the West Ham defender abusing his pet cats.

The video, showing the two kicking the animals, caused outrage when they emerged on social media last month.

Zouma was fined by the Hammers, but continued to play first-team football as investigations into his actions continued.

What was said?

“Following a full and thorough investigation, we have started the process of bringing a prosecution against Kurt Zouma and Yoan Zouma under the Animal Welfare Act," the RSPCA explained in a statement released on Wednesday.

"The two cats continue to be cared for by the RSPCA. We will be in a position to release more information once a court date is confirmed.”

West Ham's response  

Following the RSPCA's decision, West Ham issued a statement promising cooperation on the defender's behalf.

“West Ham United is aware of the RSPCA statement in relation to its investigation involving Kurt Zouma," the missive read.

"Kurt continues to cooperate fully, supported by the club. It is our understanding that Kurt’s cats have been checked by a vet, are in good health and have suffered no physical injuries.

"For legal reasons, neither Kurt or the club will be making any further comment at this time.”

Dagenham and Redbridge's response

"Dagenham and Redbridge FC note the decision of the RSPCA to charge Yoan Zouma under the Animal Welfare Act 2006," read an official club statement on their website.

"Whilst Yoan continues to fully co-operate with the RSPCA, as this matter has now progressed further, Dagenham and Redbridge FC feel it is no longer appropriate for either Yoan or the club to make any further statement.

"Dagenham and Redbridge FC maintain their position in that the club continues to condemn all animal cruelty. Since the allegation, and whilst investigations were taking place, Dagenham and Redbridge FC took the decision that Yoan should not play football for the Club.

"Four weeks have now elapsed since the incident, and the club feels that any further suspension from the team would be detrimental to both the club and Yoan. A decision has been made therefore for Yoan to be available to play."

What happened?

The West Ham player was shown to be abusing his pet kittens, as filmed by his sibling. Since then, a huge outcry has grown against the pair, from widespread condemnation to fan protests.

While Yoan was suspended however, his brother has continued to play for the Hammers, with David Moyes stating that he wanted to give him a "second chance".

Further reading