Fake hijack dad 'a broken man'

2012-10-22 08:24

Durban - The KwaZulu-Natal man who was on the run from police after allegedly staging his kidnapping and hijacking was a broken man, worried about his troubled marriage and feared losing his family.

While his family thought he had been hijacked, Leon van Rensburg checked into a remote backpackers lodge in the Drakensberg under a false name, revealed the Sunday Tribune.

Lodge owner Stephen Black said Van Rensburg had told him about the problems in his marriage.

“You could tell by looking at him that he was drained. It seemed from what he told me that he was a bit estranged from his wife but they still lived together. I think it was one of his stresses, he said he was very worried about losing his family,” he said.

After seeing a newspaper and realising who Van Rensburg was, Black talked to him and told him to come clean.

“He was shocked that I had found out who he really was. I think he had no idea what kind of mess he had [got] himself into.”

Black said Van Rensburg was “a fantastic guy” who was never aggressive and probably “just in a bad place”.  

“I felt really sad for the guy and worse when the police arrived….I have thought about what my daughter would have done if I had sent her a fake SMS like he did. I shudder at the thought because it’s almost unforgivable,” he said.

Van Rensburg’s family was said to be struggling to cope with the latest turn of events, which have seen him become a fugitive from the law and threatening to commit suicide.

  • sanchez.sancho.7 - 2012-10-22 08:31

    hello monday, so, this dude is an it guy ? which means he has a high iq somehow? please allow him to tell us what his WHOLE plan was? after faking his hijack then what......???

      JohncarlosBiza - 2012-10-22 08:36

      Maybe get sympathy from his wife when he returns and not lose his family

      tuco.angeleyes - 2012-10-22 08:42

      Maybe his life was that boring he decided to give it some form of exitement. The wrong way

      Barefoot - 2012-10-22 08:48

      high IQ because of what? i don't think it goes like that, he might have been average.

      sticky.toffee - 2012-10-22 08:55

      I feel the pain of this guy and his family but what about all the costs and time wasted for investigating a false case of hijacking. Time and money that could be better spent. Eish - then again that money would probably be used to fund some government officials fradulent claim. either way - tax payers money has been wasted.

      joemarshe.push - 2012-10-22 08:56

      What has a high IQ got to do with anything? Sometimes people do stupid in the face of adversity. The thought of losing one's family can cause one to have irrational thoughts.

      daleinn - 2012-10-22 09:05

      No one bothers about the amount of effort and resources that go into trying to find a loved one that is hijacked. I was really concerned for this guy when i first heard the story.. cmon go for family or marriage counselling, talk to a family member or a friend, really this was really not a nice thing to do , and gets no sympathy from me .

      richard.hipkin - 2012-10-22 09:13

      @Unity, I doubt its sympathy from you he's looking for, so it's no lose. But thanks for caring (not).

      janice.mcmaster.92 - 2012-10-22 09:57

      I dont understand, the previous reports were all about him being a wonderful father, husband church going man. Total 'family' man???

      scebberish.umfazi - 2012-10-22 12:18

      This is an arrestable offence? He has commited no crime! A hefty fine perhaps but even that, fine for what? He sent his daughter a text, that lied. Next time you text your family that you in a business meeting when you out drinking with your mates, you may want to think about whether you should be arrested.

      mable.jacobs.90 - 2012-10-23 09:09

      I have no sympanthy at all, people have more serious issues to deal with but wasting resources and making people worry while you're sleeping comfortably in a motel is no way to solve anything.

  • vambozha.mutemi.9 - 2012-10-22 08:39

    "He also had a mistress, and I thought it was his daughter", Black said.

      Poloyatonki1.lee - 2012-10-22 09:26

      Where in the article does it say that?

  • colingkearns - 2012-10-22 08:40

    Lets not judge the guy, he made some bad decisions but hey us humans stuff up, he is obviously in a bad place right now. Some support from the right people would help.

      PrettyUsefulArt - 2012-10-22 08:44

      HeyJoe... I'm sorry. I so don't agree with you. Everything he did was pre-meditated - right down to sending his DAUGHTER such a distressing text. He chose to cheat on his wife, he chose to inflict unimaginable pain and concern on his daughter. He chose to lie. He chose to run rather than face the music (merely confirming what a coward he is). He deserves everything he gets. And some. Choice and consequence. Now it's time for him to 'take it like a man'. I have absolutely no sympathy for him whatsoever. I guess it shows, ne?

      Erna - 2012-10-22 08:49

      Agree with you totally BrainCandy - no excuse for the upheaval he caused to his family and the cops. Face up to your problems like a man - there are worse things that can happen to you than "losing your wife/family".

      kobus.hattingh.5 - 2012-10-22 09:05

      Totally agree with you HeyJoe. Those so eager to throw stones might very well find themselves in a dark place in their lives also. Compassion is what they need, not judgement!

  • steveroodt - 2012-10-22 08:43

    This Guy has a problem if he is reading this Come clean hand yourself in. The bottle is broken already Time to pick up the pieces . I am sure your family will work through this and the worst punishment would be a suspended sentence. That is if there is no other sinister reasons for your behavior.

  • Andrea - 2012-10-22 08:57

    Much like the SA banker in the UK who committed suicide last week leaving his family and children behind with all the questions and wondering Why?, my heart goes out to this man's family. No matter which way you look at it, they do not deserve this.

  • obadia.segwape - 2012-10-22 09:04

    i didnt learn anything from this guy he is a coward

  • brian.m.sithole - 2012-10-22 09:05

    Jisssslaaaaaikit hey, what's this country coming too hey? It was never like this before 94 hey. I think the Nats knew something we didn't. Fffffffflip Flippie.

  • napolita.kio - 2012-10-22 09:11

    Amazing what “a fantastic guy” can do....fantastic!

      Poloyatonki1.lee - 2012-10-22 09:30

      True hey...

  • kitty2wp - 2012-10-22 09:14

    sounds like he is the centre of his problems "unstable". we all face hardships in life and many of us lose our husbands or wives to another and our children suffer and we have to cope at work and everything starts going downhill .... but faking you own kid-napping and hijack - is a bit much - he needs mental care - who would send a text to their own daughter to say they've been hijacked - that's cruel.

      natalie.holder.313 - 2012-10-23 08:47

      To be honest I don't at all feel sorry for him he put a lot of fear in ppl and u don't do such sick things like this in this country that has a lot to deal with

  • mshiniboys - 2012-10-22 09:14

    Typical weaklings.

  • zmvulane - 2012-10-22 09:24

    It would be an ideal society that says we are looking for you so that we can assist you and not threaten the man with police and jail! It makes me shudder what we’ve become as a nation!

  • sthembiso.jali.50 - 2012-10-22 09:34

    so now we suppose 2 symphathise with him ! amazing. he should locked up.!

      scebberish.umfazi - 2012-10-22 12:40

      agreed next to the rest of thelying tax thieving people, such as Zuma, Malema and a whole list of others

  • ndou.miranda - 2012-10-22 09:49

    He wanted attention and he decide to do it the dramatic way.

  • sefako.mokgalaka - 2012-10-22 12:04

    Like Dewani , this guy is tarnishing the image of the country. The police and the media could have arrested a few more criminals with the time and resources wasted on him. It is now upto the magistrate to charge him.

      scebberish.umfazi - 2012-10-22 12:39

      @Sefako; Say What??? You are joking right! What image does this country have left that is in any way possible to tarnish any further, the ANC already took care of the tarnishing part, more like serious rust than tarnish though.

  • scebberish.umfazi - 2012-10-22 12:34

    With all the cr@p going on in this country, this irrelevent rubbish makes headline news?

  • johan.harlaar.9 - 2012-10-22 18:47

    Hi Leon, Things are never as bad as you imagine. The fear is usually bigger than the event. Maybe your marriage is bad and maybe a divorce is better than staying together. Come home and face your fears, it will work out. Peace brother.

  • phiwase.shabalala - 2012-10-22 21:18

    give the man a break, no one really knows what pushes him and what he has been through in his life with his wife.

  • cindy.dunn.9 - 2012-10-23 00:37

    We have no right to judge. What he did was horrific I won't disagree. In saying that he needs to know he may lose his wife for whatever reason.... That is between them but he needs to know if he has been a good father he will never lose his kids. Even if he was a terrible father he won't lose his kids, your kids always love you even when they think they hate you, man up it won't be as bad as it seems

  • nele.mdladla - 2012-10-24 12:00

    At 50 you should be wise enough to know dat two wrongs don't make it right.

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