A SCOTTISH nurse who was jailed in Saudi Arabia over the murder of a colleague has died in hospital after suffering a brain haemorrhage.

Lucille McLauchlan passed away in Ninewells Hospital in Dundee yesterday morning when her family, who had gathered by her bedside, took the decision to switch off her life support machine.

The 47-year-old, who made headlines around the world when she was convicted alongside accomplice Deborah Parry of the murder of Australian nurse Yvonne Gilford on Christmas Eve 1996, collapsed at her home in Broughty Ferry, Dundee, on Sunday night.

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A close family friend said the mother-of-two was found by her two children, 13-year-old son Zac and 11-year-old daughter Mica, who were unable to rouse her, and she was taken to hospital by ambulance.

The friend said: "Mica phoned for an ambulance and Zac did his best but Lucille was completely unresponsive."

Ms McLauchlan was being kept alive on a ventilator to allow family members, including her mother and her former husband Grant Ferrie, time to say their final farewells.

Ms McLauchlan spent 17 months in a Saudi jail after she was arrested by police at a shopping mall allegedly using credit cards stolen from Ms Gilford, who was found stabbed, bludgeoned and suffocated in her room at the King Fahd Military Medical Centre in Dhahran.

The Scot, who was said to have played a lesser part in the murder, was sentenced to 500 lashes while Ms Parry was sentenced to be publicly beheaded following her conviction.

Both women signed confessions admitting the killing, but later retracted them claiming they were coerced, with threats of sexual violence by the Saudi authorities.

The two nurses were pardoned by King Fahd in 1998 and freed after so-called "blood money" was paid to Mrs Gilford's family in Australia.

Ms McLauchlan returned to Scotland but was subsequently banned from resuming her nursing career.

It also emerged that she had been fired from her previous job and had applied for work in Saudi Arabia using forged references to escape being sentenced for ­stealing £300 from an elderly patient.

Back in Scotland, she found work in a series of low-paid jobs, made a number of appearances in court over the years and was declared bankrupt in 2008.

In 2011 the former nurse was convicted of fraudulently using another person's credit and debit cards to order and obtain electrical goods, including two TVs and a netbook computer, over the internet.

She was placed on probation for two years after her lawyer, William Boyle, told the court: "Whatever happened in Saudi Arabia has left an indelible mark. It changed her. She has felt little in the way of emotions since that time."

Later that year she was fined £65 at Dundee's Justice of the Peace Court after stealing a digital radio from an Asda store in the city.

Ms McLauchlan's last ­appearance in court came in ­October 2012, when she walked free after she admitting stealing a tub of face cream from a Boots store in Brook Street, Broughty Ferry.

Mr Boyle said last night: "Her life support system was switched off on medical advice and arrangements were made, along with Lucille's wishes, for her organs to be donated.

"All the family are in a state of shock and they ask that her and their privacy be respected."