Daniel Sturridge, the former Liverpool, Chelsea, West Brom and England striker, has been ordered to pay around £22,000 to a man who found his beloved dog ‘Lucci’ after it was stolen during a burglary at his Los Angeles house in 2019
An emotiona l Sturridge appealed to social media upon realising the dog’s disappearance, asking the public to help find his Pomeranian pooch called Lucci.
The ex-Liverpool, Chelsea, West Brom and England striker offered an award of around £22,000 to anybody who was able to find and bring the dog to him.
However, the dog was soon found by Los Angeles based musician Foster Washington, who has proceeded to take the striker to court after he allegedly failed to pay him the money.
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“Hopefully he pays up and doesn’t try to appeal it,” Washington told PA.
“I’m excited about it, I’ve been fighting this case for over a year, I can’t believe it’s over.
“When we found the dog I thought my life was going to be better.”
Sturridge’s dog is believed to have been stolen on July 9, 2019.
It is believed to have been taken alongside a variety of other things during a break-in, which saw robbers force their way into Sturridge’s residence by shattering a glass door.
Upon coming across the carnage at his American home, Sturridge immediately contacted police and took to social media to try and find the dog.
“Somebody has broken into the house in LA and took my dog from the house. Listen whoever knows who broke into my crib, I’ll pay you anything,” an emotional Sturridge said on social media.
“I’m dead serious. I want to know what’s gone on, I want to know why they’ve taken my dog, I want to know why they’ve taken bags from upstairs. I want to know what the f*** has gone on, I’m dead serious.
“How can you break into a house in LA and take somebody’s dog, are you crazy? You’ve come into a house to take a dog?
“Yo, somebody please find my dog. I will pay anything I’m dead serious, I want my dog back.”
The former England international added he’d award “20-30 grand” to anybody who was able to find the dog.
The following day Washington contacted Sturridge on social media after finding the dog in an alleyway in Los Angeles.
However, nearly two years after reuniting Sturridge with his beloved pooch, Washington alleges he has not been paid.
Documents obtained by the PA news agency show that a default judgment was given, meaning Sturridge did not answer to the complaint.
He has since been ordered to pay $30,085 dollars (£22,400).
Washington added he had yet to arrange the payment with Sturridge.
Representatives of the striker, who now plays for Australian side Perth Glory, have been contacted for comment by PA.