Former SNP MP 'may have benefited £70,000 from embezzlement'

McGarry was found guilty of taking £19,974 while treasurer of Women for Independence.

Former SNP MP Natalie McGarry may have benefited £70,000 from embezzlement, confiscation hearing told STV News

Former MP Natalie McGarry may have benefited £70,000 from her embezzlement a confiscation hearing was told on Tuesday. 

McGarry, 41, was found guilty of taking £19,974 while treasurer of Women for Independence.

She also embezzled further £4,661 while treasure, secretary and convener of the Glasgow Regional Association of the SNP.

McGarry – who denied the accusations – had been the MP for Glasgow East between 2015 and 2017.

She was sentenced to two years at Glasgow Sheriff Court in June 2022 which was reduced on appeal.

The draft £70,000 benefit figure came from a report drawn up by defence accountant David Adamson.

Mr Adamson was instructed to prepare the interim activity report by defence counsel Allan MacLeod.

Mr MacLeod and the Crown were asked by Sheriff Barry Divers at a previous hearing to prepare a joint minute outlining issues between both parties’ believed benefit figures. 

Mr MacLeod told Tuesday’s hearing that this was not done as the report was only recently compiled and not disclosed to the Crown. 

The Crown’s accountant had estimated McGarry’s benefit figure to be £195,000.

Mr MacLeod told the court: “There is a significant reduction according to our report in relation to what the accountant considers to be the benefit figure.

“To give a better indication – rather than making it a benefit figure of £195,000, it is under £70,000.

“There are discussions that need to take place with Mr Adamson – these are things that should have been further clarified.”

Prosecutor Brian Duffy stated that the defence report will need to be considered by the Crown accountant.

A further procedural hearing has been set for August where McGarry’s attendance has been excused.

Sheriff Divers requested that the defence report be shared with the Crown and a period of time for it to be considered.

The joint minute document that had been requested for the hearing must also be lodged.