Anthonij Rupert, the 49-year-old youngest son of Dr Anton Rupert, from one of the leading South African wine dynasties, has been killed in a motorcar accident near his home in the Franschhoek Valley.

He was travelling alone in his car during a storm on Saturday night when he crashed and was killed. Police found his BMW 740i overturned, but the circumstances surrounding the accident are still unclear.

Rupert owned among others, the L'Ormarins Estate and was in partnership with the eminent Benjamin de Rothschild, whose family in turn own Chateau Clarke and have a partnership in Chateau Lafite-Rothschild. They established R & de R - Fredericksburg winery outside Paarl in 1997.

Besides their direct involvement in the wine industry, the Rupert empire in South Africa has a 50% share in Rembrandt-KWV Investments which in turn owns a 60% in Distell, South Africa's largest liquor wholesaler and producer.

A memorial service is planned at his local church tomorrow (Tuesday) afternoon and a private burial service will be held later. Rupert, who was unmarried, is survived by his father, Anton, mother Huberte, brother Johan and sister Hanneli.