A Malpas man who stabbed his dealer during a struggle as he tried to steal the drugs was jailed for more than four years.

Christian Collis, 22, of Leech Road, Malpas, admitted wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm, after using a knife to stab cannabis dealer James Fisher three times during the incident in May this year.

He was jailed for four years and eight months at Shrewsbury Crown Court this week.

Passing sentence Judge Peter Barrie said that, never mind that cannabis is illegal, the defendant had acted to steal it, and it was an aggravating feature that he was under the influence of cocaine at the time.

He said that, while he accepted the defendant was going through a life crisis, he was still responsible for his actions.

"Most despicably, having a knife for what you said was your own protection," he said.

"The consequences could have been much worse than they already are."

He was also given concurrent sentences of six months for possession of a knife, two months for possession of MDMA, two months for possession of cocaine, 12 months for theft, and 14 days for possession of cannabis.

Kevin Jones, prosecuting, said that the victim had admitted that on May 13 he was out and about selling cannabis and had arranged to meet Collis in Shrewsbury.

He said Mr Fisher was approached by three men and that Collis had snatched a bag of cannabis before running off.

Mr Fisher suffered three stab wounds – to the left side of his back, a second in his middle back area and a third in the left side of his abdomen.

"He said they didn’t feel like punches but as a result of what had happened he let go. It was after this happened he realised he had been stabbed," said Mr Jones.

"He panicked and said he put pressure on the wound and made contact with a friend for help," he said.

Owen Edwards, for Collis, said the case was surrounded by “a set of unusual circumstances” and the sadness was how quickly his client's life had spiralled out of control.