A DENTAL nurse stole thousands of pounds worth of toothbrushes and accessories from his practice before selling them on eBay to pay for the care of his cancer-stricken mum, a court heard.

James Connor, 23, took £6,215 of stock from the Beaufort Park surgery in Chepstow in six months, magistrates heard.

Connor, of Oakley Close, Caldicot, had landed his first job as a dental nurse at the Beaufort Park practice in Beaufort Way, Cwmbran magistrates heard.

Staff became aware that dozens of toothbrushes had gone missing last December, prosecutor Katie Pidgeon told the court.

One Oral-B toothbrush was found in his car and a probe revealed he had taken the accessories.

He was suspended and when police questioned him about the missing items, he replied: “There is none of that left. There are no toothbrushes. They are gone. I have sold them.”

He later said he had sold them on eBay to pay for private cancer treatment for his mother, Ms Pidgeon told the court.

Connor pleaded guilty to stealing £6,215 of accessories between July 1 and December 31, 2013. His solicitor, Rachel Adams, asked the court to give him “full credit” for his guilty plea and stressed that his mother still had cancer.

Magistrates ordered him to complete 240 hours of unpaid work in the next 12 months and pay back £6,215 to the surgery after probation said he was “very remorseful” for his actions.

The court heard that he would find it difficult to find another job as a dental nurse and was now taking an HGV course with a view to gaining alternative employment.

JP Peter Wood ordered him to pay back the surgery at a rate of £150 a month as well as £85 costs and a £60 surcharge.