Justice served as 'Waterkloof 2' go back to their cells
Monday's decision by a full bench of the Pretoria High Court that the ''Waterkloof 2'' - convicted murderers Reinach Tiedt and Gert van Schalkwyk - must return to prison will be welcomed by most South Africans.
Their release in 2011, when a Pretoria magistrate converted their sentences to correctional supervision on the basis of an application by the Parole Board, sparked a nationwide outcry.
In a case that caused widespread consternation in what was then still widely called "the 'Rainbow Nation'', the two youngsters, along with Christoff Becker and Frikkie du Preez, were convicted of having beaten to death a homeless black man in a park in 2001.
After a lengthy trial, in early 2005 they were each sentenced to 12 years in prison for the murder. They began serving their sentences more than three years later, in August 2008, after an unsuccessful appeal.
Tiedt and Van Schalkwyk, who were only 15 and 16 at the time of the murder, started successful businesses after their release. Van Schalkwyk had even played professional rugby for the Pumas. Meanwhile, Becker and Du Preez stayed in jail.
Then, in June this year, the Pretoria High Court ruled that the magistrate's ruling had been based on a fundamental error: Tiedt and Van Schalkwyk were not entitled to parole because more than five years of their sentence remained to be served. They were ordered to return to prison.
On Monday a full bench of the same court denied the men's application for leave to appeal and ordered that any appeal application not suspend compliance with the back-to-jail order.
As is their right, Tiedt and Van Schalkwyk will decide whether to make further appeals - but they will do so in prison, just like the other two murderers.
The law has been correctly applied and justice has been served.