A FLINTSHIRE dad who kept a cannister of CS gas "close to hand" with his drugs has been jailed.

Isaac Owen, 25, of Chester Road in Shotton, appeared at Mold Crown Court on Friday.

He admitted having been in possession of a prohibited weapon and possessing a class A drug with intent to supply on May 14, 2018.

Simon Mills, prosecuting, told the court how on the day in question, police attended an address in Holywell to make enquiries about a missing person.

Owen answered the door and upon checking the property, officers found drugs paraphernalia on the dining room table.

Following further scrutiny a bag of white powder was seen hanging out of the pocket of a Lacoste shoulder bag, on top of a freezer.

Mr Mills said: "On closer inspection, there were two bags of white powder inside the bag and a small cannister marked 'CS gas' which was later examined by forensic scientists and found to be functioning."

Following forensic examination, one of the bags of powder was confirmed to be cocaine and the other was the bulking agent benzocaine.

The two substances were "destined to be mixed together" in order to create a lower purity cocaine with a street value of about £1,000 to £1,500. Mr Mills said.

Police also found a "typical dealer's list" at the property, along with a set of scales, a phone and a quantity of small plastic bags.

The phone held messages "indicative of a street level dealing enterprise."

When interviewed by police, Owen admitted owning the Lacoste bag and said the cocaine was for personal use.

He claimed to have found the CS canister in the woods the day before, cleaned it up and "thought nothing of it."

Philip Tully, defending, said Owen had been a cocaine user at the time of the incident, adding: "He is the father of a young daughter and he accepts what he did was wrong.

"He doesn't attempt to dilute the seriousness of the offences. "This, in my submission, was Isaac Owen - at the time a drug user - operating a low level street dealing enterprise.

"He accepts he shouldn't have been in possession of the CS gas cannister.

"It is not a coincidence that it was with the drugs, but there is no evidence it was used to inflict or threaten violence to anyone."

Judge Timothy Petts told Owen: "When police came to your premises it was found that you were a street-level dealer of cocaine. "Worryingly you had a can of CS gas. You clearly had the intention to have it close to hand, if necessary."

He jailed Owen for three years for the drugs offence, with an additional nine months to be served consecutively for the weapon.

The judge ordered the forfeiture and destruction of the drugs, phone, paraphernalia and cannister.

He also ordered Owen to pay a victim surcharge of £120.