A CASH-strapped junkie who was caught red handed with a haul of class A drugs was jailed for more than three years.

Rowan Butler revealed he became embroiled in drug dealing after his girlfriend became hooked on illegal substances.

The 37-year-old was busted by police when they found him cycling in Rectory Row, Bracknell, with bags of cocaine and heroin.

Prosecuting, Lisa Goddard told Reading Crown Court: “Officers stopped the defendant on a bicycle and he was found to be in possession of an extendable baton.

“He was found to be in possession of a mobile phone with drug dealing related messages and £113 in cash.”

The judge heard how Butler, of Piggots Row, Reading, was a regular user of class A drugs.

He also had several outstanding debts which he had accumulated while feeding his drug habit.

His defence counsel added: “For some 18 years he has been a user of class A drugs.

“He has run into financial debt to various third parties.

“He says he became embroiled into this recent offending not so much because of his own drug addiction but because his girlfriend had herself become embroiled in class A drug taking and he sought to help her out.”

Butler admitted two counts of possession with intent to supply class A drugs at an earlier hearing.

Judge Maria Lamb, sentencing Butler, said: “Your record shows you are no stranger to dealing with drugs. You are a street dealer.

“You know the court has to give the sort of sentence that deters people from becoming involved in the dealing of class A drugs because of what they do to people.

“You are a good illustration of the sorry state which an individual can be brought.”