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Graffiti gang brought trains to a halt in social network craze 

Police have finally caught the “Great Train Painters”, a gang of youths responsible for the biggest-ever graffiti gang who put the lives of thousands of passengers at risk.

Ten people aged between 21 and 27 are triggered the emergency stops on at least 168 trains and caused more than half a million pounds worth of damage.

Police in Spain took three years to identify them all following a series of major alerts when train passengers were catapulted out of their seats with the sudden braking.

Two or three of the grafitti artists caught trains throughout Spain, checked out where the guards were, then pulled the emergency handles.

When the trains finally came to a stop, they would run outside and meet other members of the gang. In the space of five to eight minutes, they would daub grafitti and their own slogans on the carriages which followers recognised. They then posted their videos or mobile phone images on the social network sites to create a craze known as “palancazo”, often recruiting new members.

Some of the images daubed on the side of trains were up to 50 square metres.

The gang had a sinister side as they also carried baseball bats or sticks in case guards approached.