A Crown prosecutor who admitted stealing almost $200 of groceries from a supermarket while on a break from a court case has been discharged without conviction.

Emily Toner, 33, pleaded guilty to one charge of shoplifting when she appeared in North Shore District Court in December. She applied for a discharge without conviction, blaming the theft on an eating disorder.

Last year, the Herald revealed that Toner, who works for Auckland law firm Meredith Connell, paid for $11 of groceries and tried to take a further $200 of items without paying.

She was working on a case at North Shore District Court on November 15 and went to the supermarket during an adjournment.


The police summary of facts said Toner first filled a "personal shopping bag" with items before putting more items into a store basket.

She then took off her jacket and placed it over the top of her shopping bag, tucking it around the sides so it covered the top.

"At the checkout the defendant placed her basket and her own shopping bag on the floor in front of the counter. By this time the defendant's own shopping bag contained a number of grocery items valued at $199.10.

"She placed the items from the basket on the counter, leaving the items in her own bag. As those items were being scanned by the operator, the defendant shuffled her shopping bag along the floor towards the end of the checkout," the document stated.

Toner paid for the items in the basket, then picked up both bags and started to walk out, but was stopped by security.

"When spoken to by police, she stated she had an eating disorder which caused her to be embarrassed about the items she was purchasing and the disorder prevented her from thinking straight," the summary said.

Toner was granted a discharge without conviction on Tuesday.

A source said she was getting help for personal and medical problems and had not returned to work.


Her lawyer, Paul Wicks, said Toner was not interested in speaking publicly about her personal circumstances or the court case.

He said she was relieved with the outcome, but refused to comment further.

Mr Wicks made submissions to the court about Toner's personal situation, the details of which were suppressed by Judge Phillippa Sinclair.

He said Judge Sinclair was satisfied that the likely consequences of a conviction on Toner's circumstances would be out of all proportion to the gravity of the offending.