Earlier this year, Kurt Zouma's brother, Dagenham & Redbridge player Yoan Zouma, posted a video of the West Ham star slapping and kicking his Bengal cat on social media.
The video was shared on Snapchat with laughing emojis, and in it, Kurt Zouma could be heard saying, "I swear I'll kill it", with the sound of people laughing in the background. The video quickly went viral in England and Zouma's home country of France.
Zouma was charged with two counts of causing unnecessary suffering to a protected animal. The footballer admitted both charges. However, despite facing the possibility of jail for the offences, Zouma managed to escape prison and instead was handed 180 hours of unpaid community service at the hearing at Thames Magistrates' Court. He is also banned from owning cats for five years.
Zouma's Bengal cat, seen being kicked and hit in the video, was taken into care by the RSPCA earlier this year.
"Disgraceful and reprehensible"
Zouma's brother Yoan Zouma was also sentenced this week after pleading guilty to one count of aiding, counselling and abetting or procuring Kurt Zouma to commit an offence. He was ordered to carry out 140 hours of community service.
The judge admonished the pair, telling them that their actions were "disgraceful and reprehensible". The RSPCA, who are now looking to rehome the cats, said they hope that this case sends a clear message that animals should never be treated in this way, nor should videos of animals being harmed be shared on social media.