A vandal who caused £50,000 of graffiti damage on trains across the country, including at Westbury, has been jailed for 18 months.

Thomas Stanley, 20, of Silver Hill, Tenterden, Kent, was found guilty on all 12 charges put to him. He was convicted after attacking and damaging trains over a three year period from between December 2005 and September 2008 A train at Westbury was targeted by Stanley on May 5 2006 whilst other attacks were recorded at Folkestone, Faversham, Ashford, Redhill, Surrey and at Manchester Piccadilly.

Stanley’s crimes came to a halt when he was arrested by British Transport Police (BTP) and his Tenterden home was searched. Pictures of the damage he had caused were found to have been posted on the internet using his home computer and graffiti items were recovered from the property.

Stanley gave answers of no comment when questioned by investigators and later, in court, declined to give any testimony when summoned to the witness box.

Detective Constable Will Livings, of BTP’s Graffiti Unit, said: "Those who commit graffiti offences often believe that their work is art – sadly when the chosen canvas is railway property it cannot be considered art and is nothing more than wanton damage that costs thousands of pounds to clean up.”

"Writing graffiti on the railway or elsewhere is not a harmless pastime and we will continue to work closely with train operating companies, Network Rail and other police forces to crack down on these criminal acts."

A Southeastern trains spokesman said: “Not only does this vandalism have a financial implication but it also means that the trains have to be taken out of service to be cleaned.”