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13th Oct 2023

Daniel Sturridge releases statement following arrest warrant

Charlie Herbert

Daniel Sturridge arrest

Daniel Sturridge has released a statement following the news that an arrest warrant has been issued for him.

On Thursday, the Daily Mail reported that a US court had issues the arrest warrant after the former Premier League striker failed to appear in court in Los Angeles.

The court appearance was over a reward that Sturridge had offered in 2019 to anyone who safely returned his pet Pomeranian after he said it was stolen from his house. 

Now, in a statement posted on social media, Sturridge has said the reports on Thursday were the “first time” he had heard about the warrant.

He wrote: “The news yesterday was the first time my family and I heard that someone is continuing to try to get money from me, following the theft of my family’s dog, Lucci, which happened 4 years ago.

“The truth is, I personally paid a reward to the young boy who found him. He was delighted with the reward, as were my family and I to get Lucci home. The person seeking payment is not due any money, I already paid the young boy who found Lucci.

“I was unaware of the court hearing even taking place. The legal paperwork was sent to the Air Bnb property which we had left within 24 hours of the burglary. Therefore, I have not had the opportunity to properly represent myself in relation to these false claims.

“With that being said, I have now instructed California lawyers to deal with matters on my behalf. I am confident that this will be resolved in my favour quickly and put an end to the speculative claim for good.”

Back in 2019, following his dog’s disappearance, Sturridge released a video in which he said: “We will pay anything for the dog. Whoever brings my dog back, 20 grand, 30 grand, whatever.

“Whoever knows who broke into my crib, I’ll pay you anything. I’m dead serious. I’ll pay whatever – it doesn’t matter the cost.”

American rapper Foster Washington, who goes by the name Killa Fame, then claimed to be the man who found Sturridge’s dog before revealing he was not paid the reward promised.

Washington launched a civil lawsuit against Sturridge, accusing the 34-year-old of not having paid him the promised reward.

Since Sturridge did not respond to the complaint, he was ordered by a court in LA in December 2021 to pay Washington $30,000 following a default judgment.

Speaking at the time, Sturridge responded: “Just to let you know the truth at Christmas. I met a young boy who found my dog and paid him a reward, which he was delighted with, as was I to get my dog back because he was stolen.

“Other people are trying to benefit for their own personal gain. Thank you to the young boy once again. I’m very grateful Lucci is back with our family.”

Last month, Sturridge was called back to court for a ‘debtor’s exam’, where he was expected to answer questions regarding his finances.

After Sturridge didn’t attend, he was served with a bench warrant, which is a summons issued by a judge to arrest a defendant and bring them before court. A new hearing has been set for November 30.

Speaking to the Mail, Washington said: “For me, it’s a point of principle. He promised me the money. It’s a substantial amount of money that could change my family’s life.

“He thinks he is above the law. He thinks because he’s rich he doesn’t have to respond to what’s going on. That’s why I had to have the judge issue a warrant so he has to pay the money.”

Sturridge’s last professional game of football was in April 2022 for Australian side Perth Glory.

Earlier this season, he appeared as a pundit for Sky Sports, but he has not appeared for the broadcaster since the opening weekend in August.

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