A WOMAN involved in a £20,000 VAT fraud more than 10 years ago has come up with the missing money.

Dunfermline Sheriff Court was told that Nicola Campbell had given that sum to her solicitor.

She left the country before sentencing six years ago and it is understood she has been living in the Netherlands.

Campbell, 60, formerly of Murdocairnie Farmhouse, Cupar, had admitted committing the offence between 1st January 2010 and 31st December 2014 at Dewar Street, Dunfermline and Cupar.

She was knowingly concerned in the fraudulent evasion of VAT amounting to £20,000 in that she repeatedly submitted claims for the repayment of VAT on non-qualifying transactions and transactions which had not taken place.

Defence solicitor Stephen Morrison said the case had a “something of a chequered history”.

Sheriff Wylie Robertson commented: “That’s something of an understatement."

The solicitor said £20,000 had been paid to his firm by Campbell to be held by them.

Sheriff Robertson said that in that case he would defer sentence again until 12th June.

In February 2018, Campbell appeared in the same court and admitted the offence.

At that time the court was told she had been a company director with Business Support (Scotland) set up in 2006 by her late partner Robert Beattie.

He was the “driving force, the breadwinner and the income generator” in the business and she had struggled to cope following his death, defence solicitor Graham Basten had told the court then.

He said her fortunes had declined from living in an expensive property in Saline to living in a room with relatives in Perth.

At that hearing the solicitor had asked for more time to be given for her to find work and start paying the money back.