Bitter battle mover millions


Petra Naudé of Melkbosstrand, Cape Town, hasn’t had much opportunity to mourn the loss of her partner of nine years and the father of her two children – she’s embroiled in a dispute over his 1996 will, which leaves his multimillion-rand estate to his 27-year-old daughter.

Petra (38) is opposing an attempt to compel her to hand over assets of about R200 million, which could put her and her sons, aged 5 and 3, on the streets. She’s been denied access to funds and for weeks she and her sons have survived on the savings of her Zimbabwean domestic worker.

Her partner, Ronald Kahn, died of a heart attack in June, aged 59. A will he drew up in 1996 names his daughter, Janine Kahn, as his main heir and leaves R250 000 to the woman he was involved with at the time.

Then there’s the matter of a brown envelope Ronald gave to a close friend, Paul Killian, with the instruction that it be opened after his death. Paul can’t find the envelope now. ‘‘I don’t know what I’ve done with it,’’ he told YOU.

Petra insists the will was amended twice, after the birth of each of her sons. But Martin Kleyn, a lawyer and executor of Ronald’s estate, says in court papers the 1996 will is the only one that exists.

‘‘I know truth and justice will triumph,’’ Petra says. ‘‘I know for a fact Ron amended his will after we got together. Good Lord, we were together for nine years – in love and in business!

‘‘I don’t expect money and big inheritances to fall in my lap. I worked hard with Ron for the estate we built up. I played a decisive role in his business and I can prove it.’’

Petra will contest the attempt to seize of Ron’s properties and other assets in the Magistrate’s Court in Atlantis on 4 August. She’ll contest the validity of the 1996 will in the Cape High Court.

Read the full article in the YOU of 5 August 2010

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