U2 bassist Adam Clayton's former personal assistant Carol Hawkins has been sentenced to seven years in prison for stealing €2.8m of his money.

Hawkins was last week convicted on 181 counts of theft from the bassist's bank accounts over a four-year period.

Clayton was not in court as the 49-year-old was led away by prison guards.

She stared straight ahead as Judge Patrick McCartan delivered the sentence.

"Nothing, frankly, could explain away the scale of this dishonesty other than the greed in pursuit of a lavish lifestyle that was no responsibility of Mr Clayton's," said Judge McCartan.

He said the fact Ms Hawkins maintained her innocence throughout the trial was a factor in his sentencing and suggested if given an opportunity to commit a similar crime in the future, he was not entirely confident she would resist.

"These were crimes rooted in greed and nothing else," he said.

"Whether she was a fool or clever person really matters very little."

The judge also made an order that the proceeds of a sale of an apartment in New York bought by her be handed over to Mr Clayton.