A former SNP MP jailed for embezzling more than £25,000 from pro-independence groups has been refused leave to appeal against her sentence.

But Natalie McGarry still has permission to appeal against her conviction - despite pleading guilty.

She was sentenced to 18 months behind bars in June after admitting two charges of embezzlement in April but was freed days later pending a potential appeal.

The former MP spent the money on rent, a holiday to Spain with her husband, transfers of money to him and other lifestyle spending.

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Her bid to withdraw the guilty pleas a week after she made them at Glasgow Sheriff Court was refused by Sheriff Paul Crozier.

She was granted leave to appeal against her conviction last month, with a procedural hearing set for late September in Edinburgh.

A full hearing will take place at a later stage.

The 37-year-old was refused leave to appeal against her sentence and her bid to have that decision overturned at the second stage of the sifting process for cases was not successful.

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A Justiciary Office spokesman said: "Leave to appeal was refused in respect of sentence at the second sift."

McGarry embezzled £21,000 from Women for Independence in her role as treasurer of the organisation between April 2013 and November 2015.

She also admitted embezzling £4,661.02 in the course of her role as treasurer, secretary and convener of the Glasgow Regional Association of the SNP between April 9 2014 and August 10 2015.

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McGarry was elected as an SNP member in 2015 but resigned the party whip following the emergence of fraud allegations - which she denied at the time.

She continued in Parliament as an independent representing Glasgow East but did not seek re-election in 2017.