Father-of-three Daniel Thomas, 36, formerly of Newport, confronted the dope peddler in front of members of the public, the city’s crown court heard.

Prosecutor Emma Harris said the defendant had gone to a car park near Chepstow’s The Bell Hanger to wait for the drug dealer named ‘Zohab’ at around 9.15pm on October 21.

When he arrived, she told the court how witnesses said Thomas made “attempts to stab the driver” in his white van.

Police were alerted and Thomas, now of Hughes Crescent, Chepstow, was arrested after he handed himself in and was also found with 4.1 grams of cocaine.

Miss Harris said: “The defendant told officers he wanted to scare Zohab who he said had got too big for his boots.”

The court heard the two had a “disagreement” and Thomas had gone to his father’s house to get the knife.

The defendant admitted possession of a knife in a public place, a public order offence and possession of a controlled drug of class A.

Miss Harris said he had no previous convictions.

Sarah Isles, mitigating, said: “It was his intention to scare him and he didn’t intent to use the knife in any way.”

She said that Thomas had suffered serious recent mental health problems and added: “He is a hard-working individual who has always contributed to society.”

Judge DJ Hale told him: “A customer of a cocaine dealer has an argument with him and being upset by him and knowing where he is going to be, you go and get a knife from your dad’s.”

He told Thomas he wasn’t the usual “young oik” who came before him convicted of knife crime.

The judge said: “You have made serious attempts to take your life in recent months.

“Sending you to prison might tip you over the edge.

Thomas was jailed for four months, suspended for a year.

He was also sentenced to a community order a rehabilitation and activity requirement and told to pay a victim surcharge of £115 and £200 towards prosecution costs.