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Man jailed for 20 years for fish and chip knife murder

Image caption Mr Francis died from a stab wound to the neck

A 23-year-old has been jailed by the Old Bailey for at least 20 years for stabbing a man to death outside a fish and chip shop in a row over £50.

David Smith, 23, of no fixed abode, is one of the first people sentenced under new guidelines giving harsher terms for knife killings.

He stabbed Kelvin Francis, 26, in the neck in Cleveland Park Avenue, Walthamstow, on 7 March.

The guidelines follow other stabbings, including that of Ben Kinsella in 2008.

Smith, who had denied murder, was found guilty by the jury and given a life sentence.

Mr Francis, who was visiting Britain from Grenada, was killed in an argument over £50 and a BlackBerry phone.

Judge Richard Hone told Smith: "This was a very sad case. The prime aggravating feature, reflected in the recent change in the law, is the carrying of the knife with the intention to do violence.

"That knife is a particularly vicious weapon.

"The minimum term specified by Parliament recently is one of 25 years."

The judge was able to reduce the sentence to 20 years because of the defendant's age, previous good character and displays of remorse.

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