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Lawsuit alleges woman 'ransacked' B.C. home, illegally claimed inheritance

Deceased's mother-in-law claims will from 1995 is valid, and leaves her all assets
Vancouver Law Courts

A court battle is being waged in BC Supreme Court to determine who gets to inherit an undisclosed amount of money and property from B.C. resident Johannes Karl Siebert, who passed away Sept. 1, 2022, when he was 66 years old. 

Siebert allegedly made a will in 1995 that left a will to a number of individuals, all of whom have passed away except for one: Siebert's mother-in-law Gerturd Anna Steger, Steger said in a notice of civil claim filed last month. 

Siebert's former wife, Daniela Gabriele Siebert died in 2019. 

Shawna Lee Oda then entered the picture. She allegedly on Oct. 28 applied for "grant of administration without will" at a Kelowna court, alleging that she was Siebert's common-law spouse, Steger said in her claim. 

"Oda is not named in the will and was not, at any time, a spouse or common-law spouse of Mr. Siebert," Steger wrote in her claim.

Steger noted in her claim that the will from 1995 was "promptly located and successfully probated in Germany, and had the defendant Oda made diligent searches for testamentary documents, she could have discovered this prior to applying for administration."

German probate proceedings, however, extend only to assets located in Germany, Steger added. 

Steger then alleged that Oda illegally obtained Siebert's Canadian possessions.

Oda allegedly broke into a property in the small settlement of Lister, B.C. and trespassed, Steger claims. 

"Upon entering the residence at the property, the defendant Oda ransacked its contents," Steger wrote in her lawsuit.

"This included unlawfully breaking into three safes, reviewing Mr. Siebert's personal and confidential documents, and removing personal property of Mr. Siebert from the residence, including, but not limited, a desktop computer and a laptop computer, jewelry and items unknown to the plaintiff."

Steger also alleged that Oda illegally changed Siebert's mailing address to her own residence.

Steger seeks damages for trespass and conversion of property and a order to restrain Oda from disposing of any of Siebert's assets. She also wants a certificate of pending litigation against the property, "by virtue of the plaintiff's status as sole heir and beneficiary of the estate."

Other relief sought includes punitive damages, costs and interest.

None of the allegations in the notice of civil claim has been proven in court. 

No response to the notice of civil claim had been filed as of press time. 

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