An animal welfare organization in England and Wales removed West Ham United defender Kurt Zouma’s two cats Wednesday after social media videos showed the pets being kicked and slapped.
“Update on viral footage of cats. We’d like to reassure people that we’re investigating and the cats are safe and in our care. We have been dealing with this since before the clip went viral online and we need to follow the proper legal process and not discuss due to UK GDPR laws,” the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA) said on Twitter, referring to the EU’s data and privacy regulations.
Meanwhile, West Ham United said the English Premier League club fined the 27-year-old French defender and it is supporting the RSPCA investigation.
“Separate to the RSPCA’s investigation and pending further sanction once the outcome of that process is determined, West Ham United can confirm that Kurt Zouma has been fined the maximum amount possible following his actions in the video that circulated. The player has immediately accepted the fine, which both he and the Club agreed will be donated to animal welfare charities,” West Ham said in a statement.
The club added that Zouma is “extremely remorseful” for mistreating his pets.
A former Chelsea defender, Zouma joined West Ham in 2021 and has a contract with the Hammers until 2025.
He is a two-time English champion with Chelsea in 2015 and 2017.
Zouma helped Chelsea win the UEFA Champions League title and a UEFA Super Cup in 2021.
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