The Osbournes take the stage in their new reality TV show: Crimewatch UK

In their television show - said to be admired by President George Bush - they were billed as just like any other family, only louder. And as the rock star Ozzy Osbourne and his wife, Sharon, spoke to the media yesterday about the theft of jewellery from their home, they were again playing the role of ordinary, hard-working celebrity folk.

In their television show - said to be admired by President George Bush - they were billed as just like any other family, only louder. And as the rock star Ozzy Osbourne and his wife, Sharon, spoke to the media yesterday about the theft of jewellery from their home, they were again playing the role of ordinary, hard-working celebrity folk.

It was a theme echoed by the police who insisted that the former Black Sabbath star - notorious for biting the head off a bat during a stage performance - and his spouse should be treated with "compassion, sensitivity and respect".

In an extraordinary press conference the first couple of reality television, ashen-faced and swathed in funereal black, appeared angry and traumatised by their experience. Osbourne, not too steady on his pins at the best of times, had clasped an intruder in a headlock before, apparently, letting him fall from a 30ft window. Still furious at the temerity of the burglar coming into his home, he had, he said, been acting on "insult". Would he do it again? "Is the Pope a Catholic?" he snapped back to reporters at the Bellhouse Hotel outside Gerrards Cross in Buckinghamshire.

Uninsured gems valued at £2m belonging to Mrs Osbourne were stolen from a bedside table at the couple's mansion in nearby Chalfont St Peter as they slept after a birthday bash for David Furnish, Elton John's partner, at The Ivy in London on Sunday.

Yesterday the Osbournes offered a £100,000 reward. Accompanied by a PowerPoint presentation, courtesy of Thames Valley Police, Mrs Osbourne described the sense of loss she felt with each piece: a daisy chain necklace - a 20th anniversary present from her husband; two rare Franck Muller watches; a ring of South Seas pearls with a diamond clasp; a huge "rose ring", measuring 4in by 24in; and an improbably large 24-carat sapphire, named the "swimming pool" - for the depth of its blue, not its size, apparently. She bought it when she first started making "significant money" as an investment for her children, she said.

Then there were the two wedding rings to replace the original, bought from H Samuel when they first met in leaner times. Finally, there was a large diamond ring weighing in at 10-carats.

Mrs Osbourne explained: "Ozzy always said I was a perfect 10. He said when he had the money he would buy me a 10-carat ring, and he did."

They were, she said, like any other hard-working couple. "I'm sure a lot of people will look at us and say, 'Well, they have got more, they can buy it again, there's more serious things happening in the world, who really gives a damn?'" she said.

"But the thing is, we worked for everything. I came from Brixton, Ozzy came from not a very nice part of Birmingham, and everything we have got we have worked our arses off for.

"I worked for every goddamn penny, and when somebody comes who hasn't worked and wants to take what's yours, you know it pisses me off big time."

Live broadcasters, who had imposed a 20-second time delay because of Osbourne's fondness for profanity, need not have worried. He failed to utter a single swear word.

Recent years had seen the best and worst of times, the couple said. There had been the success of The Osbournes and The X-Factor. But then Mrs Osbourne was diagnosed with cancer and her husband suffered a quad bike accident that left him in a coma.

Two of their children had been treated for drug problems, and now, after living crime free in Los Angeles, they had been burgled. England had been a "disappointment", they said.

For the self-styled Prince of Darkness it was all very depressing. "The world is getting more and more bad. There is a lot of people who want money. There is a lot of crime," he said.

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