A policeman who stole cash during a drug raid has avoided jail, being sentenced to 200 hours community service.

Detective Sergeant Shane Stirling was caught stealing cash in a drug bust on a property in June this year.

Mr Stirling pleaded guilty to stealing as a servant, but claimed he only took $300, while the Crown alleged the total was $1000.

However the court says the difference in the disputed amount, would have little bearing on Mr Stirling's sentence.

Steve Zillman, Mr Stirling's lawyer, said his client enjoyed a 'meritorious' 20 year career and had been responsible for numerous drug busts throughout his tenure.

The court was told how Mr Stirling had previously been diagnosed with significant 'psychological and pschiatric difficulties' that affected him throughout his policing career.

"Because he was not acting rationally, he's not even to this point able to say why it was he took the money," Mr Zillman said.

"It (appears) it was the playing out of a death wish, and it has been achieved, because he has no future with the Queensland Police Service."

Queensland Police had instigated disciplinary action seeking Stirling's dismissal after the offence took place.

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