West Ham fines Kurt Zouma as RSPCA takes away cat

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West Ham have fined defended Kurt Zouma after the cat incident as sponsor suspend sponsorship with club.

West Ham have fines defender Kurt Zouma the sum of £250,000 – which will be donated to animal welfare charities.

The club initially condemned their player’s actions after the video emerged but backed manager David Moyes’ decision to start the player for the win against Watford on Tuesday night.

Moyes has said Zouma would remain available for selection while the club’s internal investigation ran its course.

“Our priority is and has always been the wellbeing of these cats,” an RSPCA spokesperson said.

“We’re grateful to everyone who expressed their concern for these cats. We were dealing with this issue before the video went viral online and are leading the investigation.

“We continue to investigate so we cannot comment further at this time.”

West Ham United confirmed the club is continuing to support an RSPCA investigation.

Adidas confirmed Zouma is no longer associated with the company after “investigating the incident internally”.

A statement read: “We have concluded our investigation and can confirm Kurt Zouma is no longer an Adidas contracted athlete.”

Adidas had earlier said: “No animal should be subject to cruel and unwarranted abuse.”

There was widespread outrage and revulsion towards the video, while more than 150,000 people have signed an online petition calling for Zouma to be prosecuted.

West Ham’s wellness partner, Vitality, has suspended its sponsorship of the club with immediate effect.

“We were very distressed by the video we have seen of Kurt Zouma. At Vitality, we condemn animal cruelty and violence of any kind,” a statement read.

“We are hugely disappointed by the judgement subsequently shown by the club in response to this incident. As such, we are suspending our sponsorship of West Ham United with immediate effect. We will now be further engaging with the club to understand what actions they will be taking to address the situation.”

Experience Kissimmee, one of the club’s sponsors, said it is “evaluating” its ongoing relationship with the club, while Umbro said it “partners with West Ham United on a club level and does not represent individual players”.

An Umbro spokesperson added: “Like West Ham United we condemn the actions of the player concerned and do not condone cruelty towards animals in any form.”

 

Source: Skysports

 

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