A WOMAN who was employed in her godmother's butty shop stole £1,500 from the takings over a three-month period.

Blackburn magistrates heard when Nikita Velden was challenged in a text message she immediately sent a reply admitting what she had done.

Velden, 26, of Hapton Road, Padiham, pleaded guilty to theft of £1,500 from Mandy Elliot, the owner of Triggers sandwich bar on Coal Clough Lane, Burnley.

She was made subject to an eight week curfew between 7pm and 7am and ordered to pay £1,500 compensation.

Suzeeda Ismail, prosecuting, said Velden had worked at the sandwich bar for a number of years but started to work there full time last year.

In November her godmother, Mandy Elliot started to notice sums of money missing from the weekly takings.

"She suspected the defendant because she was the only person in the shop every day," said Miss Ismail.

"Early in January she sent the defendant a text and she admitted stealing the money and said she would pay it back."

Miss Ismail said Velden had no previous convictions.

Nick Cassidy, defending, said his client, a mother of three, had been employed on a casual basis in the shop for a considerable period of time.

"She is thoroughly ashamed to be appearing in court for the first time in her life," said Mr Cassidy.

"To say this has caused a family rift is an understatement."

Mr Cassidy said his client's partner had a drug habit which got worse last year and he was spending all their money on drugs.

"She was ashamed he was a drug user and couldn't tell her family but at the same time she couldn't pay the rent," said Mr Cassidy.

"She was heavily pregnant and in a desperate place."

He said Velden hoped eventually to be able to apologise to her godmother.