New answers tagged bava-kamma
What you are referring to is תקנת השבים - Takanat-Hashavim - a special dispensation for those who repent. By the strict letter of the law, you have to return what you stole. If it no longer exits, then you have to pay for it. However, since it would be a more inconvenience to return certain items, Chazal declared that the thief may keep those items and pay ...
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