Kurt Zouma’s brother Yoan has apologised for his involvement in a video showing the West Ham defender abusing his pet cat, saying he ‘deeply regrets’ the ‘upset and distress’ he has caused.
Yoan Zouma, 23, who plays for National League outfit Dagenham & Redbridge, filmed his older sibling kick, slap and throw objects at the animal and uploaded the disturbing footage to his Snapchat account on Sunday.
Metro.co.uk understands the Met have no plans to investigate the incident and, as it stands, both footballers are expected to escape police punishment.
However, a Change.org petition – signed by more than 10,000 people at the time of writing – has called for the 27-year-old France international to be prosecuted, with West Ham also coming under pressure to sack their summer signing from Chelsea.
The Hammers centre-back issued a grovelling apology after the video surfaced on Monday and his younger brother has followed suit in a brief statement published on Dagenham & Redbridge’s official website this afternoon.
‘I deeply regret my involvement in the video that has been widely circulated and unreservedly apologise, not only for my actions, but for the upset and distress this will have caused to so many people,’ he said.
‘I am now taking time to reflect on what I have done but wish to assure everyone that this was an isolated incident and not something that I am proud of.’
Dagenham & Redbridge condemned the player’s behaviour and said they would take time to consider the appropriate response to the video.
A club statement read: ‘Dagenham & Redbridge FC condemns the actions of our player Yoan Zouma in filming the video that has circulated of his brother, and his reactions to the events shown.
‘Since first becoming aware of the incident this morning the club has had discussions with Yoan and we will now take some time to consider our response, which we will of course make public in due course.
‘However, in the meantime we would like to make it completely clear that we in no way condone any form of cruelty towards animals and take this matter very seriously.’
In response to the disturbing footage, the RSPCA denounced Zouma’s behaviour and emphasised the importance of reporting instances of suspected animal abuse.
‘This is a very upsetting video,’ a spokesperson for the animal welfare charity said.
‘It’s never acceptable to kick, hit or slap an animal, for punishment or otherwise.
‘We are so grateful to people who report suspected animal suffering to us and we would like to reassure people we will always look into and, if necessary, investigate any complaints made to us about animal welfare.’