He used to steal when he was ignorant but then regretted
Long time ago while I was in the prime of life, I was so inadvertent, ignorant and poor that I would steal livestock. Having repented and willing to discharge my responsibility regarding what I have stolen, I ask the following questions:1-
I stole an amount of cardamom estimating 120 riyals forty years ago and want to (Part No. 11; Page No. 209) pay back its value. Should I estimate it according to its today's value or according to the value for which I sold it at that time?
2- I stole some goats that produced offspring while in my possession. Should I give back the original number of goats or give back the offspring as well to the rightful owners?3- If there were partners with me, should I give back my share only, or what should I do?May Allah safeguard you.
You should pay the value of cardamom for which you sold it at the time you stole it to its rightful owner if alive or to the heirs if he is dead. If this is not possible, you should give it in charity on behalf of the owner. However, you should give the value to the owner whenever you reach him or his heirs later, in which a case the reward of charity will be yours In sha’a-Allah (if Allah wills). As for the goats you stole, you should give them back along with their offspring to the rightful owner if alive or to the heirs if he is dead. However, if there are no heirs or you cannot reach them, you should give the estimated total value of the goats and their offspring in charity on behalf of the owner. Anyway, you should give the goats and their offspring or their value to the owner whenever you reach him or his heirs later, in which a case the reward of charity will be yours In sha’a-Allah. If you have partners in stealing, you should free yourself from accountability through giving back your share of the stolen property to the rightful owner or give it in charity on behalf of the owner in case you could not reach (Part No. 11; Page No. 210) the owner or the heirs as stated earlier. Moreover, you have to sincerely repent and be determined not to do this evil act again. Furthermore, you should advise your stealing partners to free themselves from accountability and warn them against Allah's Punishment. They should be advised that taking over people's properties is an act of injustice that is unforgivable unless properties are returned to the rightful owners or otherwise they forgive or waive their rights.May Allah grant us success. May peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family, and Companions.