NIRON Parker-Lee has been found not guilty of murdering a fellow drug dealer in Brierley Hill.

The 21-year-old admitted inflicting the fatal stab wound that killed 24-year-old Mansoor Mahmood in the town's High Street on Saturday October 15, 2016, but denied murder - insisting he acted in self-defence.

And after retiring to consider the evidence presented during a retrial at Birmingham Crown Court, the seven woman five man jury today concluded Parker-Lee, of Blewitt Street, Pensnett, was not guilty.

Mr Mahmood, a father-of-two, died at Birmingham’s Queen Elizabeth Hospital as a result of the single stab wound.

The court was told Mr Mahmood and Parker-Lee were both drug dealers and were known to each other.

Parker-Lee told the court he had been carrying a knife for his "own protection" after previous run ins with Mr Mahmood - including an incident where the deceased and two other men had allegedly chased him into a chip shop armed with a mallet, knife and baseball bat for dealing drugs on their turf.

He said he pulled the knife out as Mr Mahmood ran at him after they had traded punches, hoping the weapon would make him “back off”.

Mr Mahmood staggered into nearby Dixi Chicken takeaway before collapsing - the trial before his Honour Judge Philip Parker QC was told - and despite undergoing emergency surgery at hospital he later died of the "devastating injury" to his chest and abdomen.

Christopher Millington QC, prosecuting, alleged Parker-Lee had armed himself with the deadly weapon as soon as he saw Mr Mahmood approaching from across the street and told jurors he had not been acting in self-defence.

But after considering the evidence the jury returned a verdict of not guilty.

Despite the acquittal - Parker-Lee was this afternoon given a three-year jail term for a string of weapon and drug offences including possession of a knife in an earlier incident involving Mr Mahmood - the man he fatally stabbed.

The court was told that on March 24, 2016, Parker-Lee was confronted by Mr Mahmood and another Asian man in Brierley Hill for dealing on their turf.

“All three of you produced knives, to the absolute horror of people who saw it,” Judge Philip Parker QC said.

The court heard Parker-Lee ran away from the men and, after he realised police were in pursuit, he disposed of his knife by throwing it into a garden.

After he was arrested, crack cocaine and heroin were found on his person.

Parker-Lee later pleaded guilty to possessing class A drugs and possessing an offensive weapon - on the basis that the knife hadn’t been his and he’d “picked it up off the ground” - however during the murder trial he admitted it was his weapon and he’d used it for protection.

While he was awaiting a trial of issue, he fatally stabbed Mr Mahmood and went on the run - leading to him missing a planned court appearance at Wolverhampton Crown Court in November.

He was finally arrested in August 31, 2017, and while he was awaiting trial for the murder charge, he assaulted a prison officer.

The court heard that when a fight broke out between two inmates, Parker-Lee, who had previously been assaulted by one of the men, took out a sock which had a tin of tuna hidden inside and began “swinging it around” - accidentally hitting the prison officer several times.

The judge sentenced Parker-Lee to a total of three years for the offences, adding he would serve half and be on licence for the remainder of his sentence.