Three Romanian men were caught as they loaded clothing, footwear and bags stolen from Primark in Mansfield, into a car, a court has heard.
Florin Bone, Marian Cozianu and Robert Prindurel were seen loading a large amount of clothing in to the rear of a vehicle, on August 18, outside the store, and officers were called.
Police returned the 19 items, worth £175, to Primark where a stock-check revealed they had not been sold.
Prosecutor Sarah Sanderson said Bone, who had been working at Sports Direct for two weeks, told police he committed the theft on impulse and planned to wear what he stole.
Prindurel, who had been in the UK for three weeks, and working at Sports Direct for one week, offered no explanation for the theft. He was cautioned for stealing meat on August 4.
Cozianu told police he planned to sell the clothes and send money to his girlfriend and four-year-old son, in Romania. He had been in the UK for 18 months, but found himself out of work.
Bone, 22, Cozianu, 20, and Prindurel, 19, all of Mount Crescent, Warsop, admitted theft when they appeared before magistrates in Mansfield, on Monday.
Chris Lacey, mitigating, said Prindurel had encountered “real problems” accessing his wages from the agency he worked for.
He said Sports Direct workers are banned from wearing branded clothes, so the trio had gone to Primark because the clothing there is not branded.
Both Prindural and Bone, who had been paid that day, described it as a “spontaneous decision.”
Tim Haines, for Cozianu, said it was his second visit to the UK, after working here for 18 months, and he returned two weeks ago.
The bench said they were “concerned and disappointed” that the trio had resorted to offending.
Cozianu was given a 12 month conditional discharge and was ordered to pay £85 court costs and a £30 victim surcharge.
Bone and Prindurel were fined £85, and ordered to pay £85 court costs and a £30 victim surcharge, each.