It's those pesky 'Vietnamese gangsters' who are responsible for the 82 (yep, 82!) cannabis factories that have been discovered in the borough since April this year, "each one capable of producing £500,000 worth a year of the powerful Skunk strain."
Why Newham? Well you see it's popular with gangsters because of the "high volume of relatively cheap rented accommodation". See you don't get that on Location, Location, Location do you?
So whilw the criminal gangs are getting their feet well and truly on the first rung of the property ladder, the police are having to dream up ways in which to combat this mini crime empire. Their solution:
Residents are being asked to use their noses and report to police if they detect a powerful and unusual odour coming from a house...
As this 'powerful Skunk strain' also has a 'powerful odour' they're hoping that the public will be able to notice the smell from the street and inform the police.
And they know it can work, because rival gangs have apparently been going round sniffing other houses so they can break in and steal the 'produce'.
All of which begs the question: can't they just use trained sniffer dogs rather than members of the public?