Fargo Sting Operation Leaves Ozzy, Fans Feeling Stung

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This week, Ozzy Osbourne is angry. Yesterday, the former Black Sabbath frontman focused his fury on illegal downloaders. Now, the Ozz is "outraged" at a sheriff in Fargo, North Dakota, for using an Osbourne/Rob Zombie concert on Monday to attract and then arrest fans on outstanding warrants. In a statement, Ozzy insists he had no knowledge of the sting operation Fargo sheriff Paul D. Laney masterminded without permission. As we told you Wednesday, Laney and several other area task forces scheduled a fake pre-concert party, then mailed out invitations to some of Fargo's least finest. When the invitees showed up (the charges ranged from failure to pay child support to unpaid parking tickets to drug charges), they were greeted with handcuffs and those arrest warrants. After the successful (and let's face it, comical if you weren't busted) sting operation netted forty perps, Laney held a congratulatory press conference, which especially irked Ozzy. "Instead of holding a press conference to pat himself on the back," says Osbourne, "Sheriff Laney should be apologizing to me for using my name in connection with these arrests."

Ozzy should be mad; he's having a hard enough time selling copies of Black Rain, now these fan have to pay their fines and buy CDs? "Sheriff Laney went out of his way to tarnish my reputation by implying that I somehow attract a criminal element, which is certainly not true. My audiences are good hard-working people who have been hugely supportive of my music for nearly four decades," Ozzy continued. Despite Laney's sting operation, Ozzy insists he holds no grudges against Fargo, and hopes to return to the city under "more favorable circumstances."

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