Pretoria - In 2002 Stefan du Preez made headlines around the country when he allegedly stole an aircraft from Wonderboom Airport and landed it on the N4 highway in what was said to be a suicide attempt.
Now his concerned sister has turned to court in an attempt to prevent him from directly receiving his about R1.6 million inheritance from his deceased mother’s estate.
Deidre de Jongh, of Pretoria East, said in papers before the Gauteng High Court, Pretoria, that her brother’s share of his inheritance should be administered by a curator and that he should only receive a monthly allowance.
De Jongh stated that her brother suffered from emotional and other problems and that he would simply squander his money if it was given to him all at once.
The court meanwhile appointed a curator - a lawyer - to investigate Du Preez’s situation and to present his case, on his behalf, to the court. His sister wants the court to declare him unable to manage his own affairs.
Du Preez will, however, have a voice before the court by way of the curator, who will act in his best interests.
Du Preez was 34 when he allegedly stole a Cessna from Wonderboom Airport. Charges were at the time dropped against him as there was a problem locating witnesses.
De Jong, in court papers, cited this incident as one of the examples of her brother’s “ irrational” behaviour over the years.
She said their now deceased father had to bail his son out of trouble on many occasions. De Jongh stated that he took the aircraft at the time to commit suicide by crashing it somewhere. “He eventually came to his senses and landed it and then deserted it.”
After the incident, he was admitted to Vista Clinic for treatment for his mental problems. Du Preez, however, at the time felt there was nothing wrong with him and discharged himself.
De Jongh said from a young age her brother had a dream to become an SA Air Force pilot, but he could not fulfil this dream due to problems in his life.
His behaviour became more erratic and he squandered money his father gave him to train as a flight engineer. He was also in and out of jobs and was prone to substance abuse, she said.
Du Preez often ended up on the streets and he also received support from a church organisation.
“My brother’s situation worsened due to his emotional instability and substance abuse,” his sister said. After their father died, she tried to shield her ailing mother from him and his emotional and financial problems.
De Jongh told the court she had her brother’s wellbeing at heart, but she no longer saw her way open to assist him. She called on the curator to speak to the various psychologists and other institutions who have over the years worked with her brother.
De Jongh had, following the latest incident where he was rendered homeless, assisted him in obtaining a flat, but she said she could no longer deal with him.
“There can be hardly any doubt that my brother can't administer his estate,” she stated.
She said it would be to his advantage if a professional person could be appointed to assist him.