It is haram to bring goods into the country for business without paying custom duties. This may explain why Muslim scholars have stated that it is better to avoid buying smuggled goods so as not to render any financial assistance to those who help smuggle them.
Sheikh Ahmad Kutty, a Senior Lecturer and Islamic Scholar at the islamic Institute of Toronto, Ontario, Canada, states: “We are not allowed to do that because as Muslims we must abide by the laws of the country we live in; if we are entering another country we must abide by the laws of the host country as long as those laws do not contradict the principles of Islam.
At no time should Muslims take the law into their own hands, for that would amount to creating anarchy and lawlessness which contradict Islam’s stress on law and order.”
Moreover, the prominent Muslim scholar, Zeinab Al-`Alawani, researcher at the International Institute of Islamic Thought (IIIT), Herndon, Virginia; and instructor of Fiqh, School of Islamic Social Sciences, Leesburg, Virginia, adds:
“Islam has set out solid moral and ethical legal injunctions to protect human relations. The Qur’an and the teachings of the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) give special attention to this aspect. Allah said: “O ye who believe stand out firmly for justice as witnesses to Allah, even as against yourselves, or your parents, or your kin, and whether it be against rich or poor for Allah can protect both. Follow not the lust of your hearts. Lest you swerve, and if you distort justice or decline to do Justice, verily Allah is well acquainted with all that you do” (An-Nisaa’ 4: 135)
Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) was the perfect model of truthfulness and trustworthiness which were the main characteristics that enabled Muslims to win the hearts and minds of many communities such as those in Indonesia centuries ago.
We are instructed by Allah to be just, trustworthy, and truthful even if it is detrimental to our own interests. There is no excuse for Muslims to violate the law of the land. Allah says in the Qur’an: “Say: Come, I will recite unto you that which your Lord hath made a sacred duty for you: that ye ascribe no thing as partner unto Him and that ye do good to parents, and that ye slay not your children because of penury. We provide for you and for them and that ye draw not nigh to lewd things whether open or concealed. And that ye slay not the life which Allah hath made sacred, save in the course of justice. This He hath commanded you, in order that ye may discern” (Al- An`am 6: 151)
Therefore, Muslims must behave, in their dealings with people of other faiths, with kindness and justice. The relationship between Muslims and non-Muslims cannot deviate from the main framework and essential purpose for which Allah has revealed His Words and sent His Messengers, which is the establishment of justice in the world. Allah the Almighty says: “We have sent Our messengers with manifest signs and sent down with them the Book and Balance that people may act with justice” (Al-Hadid 57: 25) This is an indisputable universal principle which applies with respect to the rights of Muslims and non-Muslims alike.
Today, one of the most effective ways of presenting Islam is to behave as people having principles. It is the Muslims’ duty and priority to be good examples by applying Allah’s Commands.”