The ‘widows of Rawagede’ was a landmark civil court case (2011), holding the Dutch state accountable for their husbands’ murder by the Dutch military in the Indonesian War of Independence (1945-49), resulting in an apology and individual compensation. Since then, many more claims followed, in Indonesia as in other former colonized countries, suing the former colonizers for mass violence (UK/Kenia, European countries/CARICOM). While the categories in which injustice can be addressed and their impact expand, it is not just a success story: unintended consequences often undermine the very goal of justice. However, a debate about alternative routes is missing. Thus, what to learn from those court cases for the debate on how to repair colonial wrongs and the slavery past?