A Victorian law from the early days of rail travel showed its teeth yesterday when a businessman was convicted of blocking a commuter line with his car in a moment of "staggeringly stupid" frustration.

Property manager Simon Taylor, 47, faces up to two years' jail for using a level crossing on the Eastbourne to London line to park his Renault Kangoo after discovering his usual train was not stopping at his East Sussex village station.
He was convicted of obstructing an engine, under the 1861 Malicious Damages Act, originally passed to deter farmers and youths from messing about near lines.

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