A WOMAN who stole cosmetics from a pharmacy was struggling financially and had "bills coming out of her ears" at the time, a court heard.
Lisa Saunders (26) was caught with a magnet in her handbag which is used for detagging goods when she was searched by gardai.
Judge David McHugh ordered her to complete 120 hours' community service in lieu of three months' prison.
The defendant, of Fassaugh Avenue in Cabra, admitted theft and possession of articles for use in a theft at a hearing at Blanchardstown District Court.
Garda Kevin Cooney said that he had been called to Boots in the Liffey Valley Shopping Centre shortly after noon on September 13 last year after security staff stopped two women stealing cosmetics.
Gda Cooney said Saunders took goods valued at €46.
The garda also told how the defendant was searched by officers and found with a magnet in her handbag, which is used for detagging items.
Defence solicitor Simon Fleming said Saunders was a single parent who worked part-time in a bookmaker's.
Mr Fleming added that his client was struggling financially at the time of the incident, and in her words had "bills coming out her ears".
The court heard Saunders had 11 previous convictions. She previously received the probation act for theft matters.
Mr Fleming claimed the defendant appreciated the fact that she could not continue to enjoy the leniency of the court, and told how she realised that she was "facing down the barrel of a sentence".
He also said that if given one final chance, Saunders promised that she would not come before the court again.