German discounter Lidl has emphasised its innocence even as it agreed to pay fines for allegedly spying on staff.

In March of this year Lidl was accused of using private detectives and secret cameras in its German stores to spy on staff.

According to local reports, Lidl composed a dossier that included information on a variety of topics, from the frequency of toilet breaks to personal relationships between employees.

However, Lidl has vehemently denied these accusations. 

"The cameras were installed to combat shoplifting," a spokesperson for the company told just-food.

The retailer admitted using private detectives but claimed they too were employed to combat shoplifters and emphasised that they are no longer used.

Following an official investigation, German authorities have ordered the retailer to pay fines that reportedly total "seven figures".

Lidl declined to comment further on the outcome of the investigation.