A CHEMIST store worker who stole more than £600 from her employer has been fined £240 at Selkirk Sheriff Court.

Nikki Middlemass of Barrows Croft, St Boswells, pleaded guilty to embezzling £606.99 while working at Boots in High Street, Melrose between March 4 and April 1.

The court was told the 32-year-old had her own staff log-in and on March 4 she proceeded to put a refund of £169.99 onto her own bank card.

On March 7 she carried out the same procedure in the sum of £150 and on April 1 it was £290.

Procurator fiscal Graham Fraser said: "These were picked up by the security software and the accused was interviewed about the matter.

"She explained she was in debt and could not see any out of her predicament.

"She was remorseful and resigned."

Mr Fraser said the accused could not have been more open or honest when dealing with the police and she had taken steps to repay the full amount.

Defence lawyer Mat Patrick confirmed the full amount had been repaid.

He said: "She has made a very grave error of judgement.

"She was under a degree of pressure financially herself. It does not look like it was very well thought out."

The court heard that Middlemass had now secured alternative employment as a beauty therapist.

Sheriff David Clapham said:"You do not need me to tell you that this was a serious breach of employment trust. "A conviction for dishonesty will have a considerable effect on you for the future."

He reduced the fine from £360 due to the guilty plea.