Masjid Hidayatullah, Suhbah after Jumu`ah
(A question is asked about accusing anyone of fornication/adultery.)
Prophet (s) said:
علما امتي كانبيا بني اسرائيل
`ulamaa ummattee ka-anbiyaa Bani Israa`eel.
The scholars of my nation are like the prophets of Bani Israa`eel. (Ihyaa of Imam Ghazali)
The pious, sincere, good-hearted scholars are like the prophets of Bani Isra’eel (...), so these people can be enough; they can guide the ummah.
Finally, Allah (swt) has mentioned that all of that is by obedience: ati`oollaha wa ati`u 'r-Rasoola wa ooli 'l-amri minkum. (4:59) If you’re not Allah (swt) you obey Him, if you’re not Prophet (s) you obey him; also, wa ooli 'l-amri minkum, “and obey those who are in authority.” Who is in authority in your eyes, if you follow them you will be safe.
No one, no one, can give a fatwa on someone who made zina (adultery)! No one has rights to do that, because this is a dangerous issue (a prerequisite of which you have) to be righteous in front of Allah (swt) when you accuse someone of zina. The judge has to know the whole situation of that zina, such as: why did it happen, where did it happen, is there a witness, and I am shy to say, was the witness able to see the man’s private parts in the lady’s private parts of her body? Did anyone slide his hand between them and find a ‘connection’ so that the hand was stopped?
If you have all these elements/evidence, then the judge has the right to proceed; however, if there is no such evidence then it is a big liability for anyone to say that the person (committed zina) and had that relationship.