Jayde Panayiotou’s father, Derrick Inggs, struggled to fight back tears when he took the stand on Thursday morning, telling the Port Elizabeth High Court that his former son-in-law was his friend.
“I thought he was a very good man,” said an emotional Inggs, who stared at Christopher Panayiotou from time to time, referring only to him as “accused number one”.
Panayiotou, 30, refused to look at Inggs as he testified, showing some emotion for the first time yesterday when he placed his head in his hands and then rubbed his eyes.
Inggs said he and his wife loaned the couple at least R250 000 prior to Jayde’s murder on April 21 last year. The first amount of R40 000 was so that Jayde could pay off her car.
Another amount of R100 000 was for the transfer costs of the couple’s newly purchased luxury Lovemore Heights home.
Inggs said Panayiotou had also approached him about investing in a business opportunity and he had considered it “because he was my son”.
Commenting on middleman Luthando Siyoni – who the state alleges acted as the go-between for Panayiotou and the suspected hitmen – Inggs said he didn’t know what the bouncer looked like and in fact did not want to know.
“I don’t even want to look at photographs of him,” he said.
Defence advocate Terry Price SC said he had the deepest sympathies for Inggs.
Testimony continues on Thursday afternoon.