Okay, flipping through the relevant chapter of the book The Buried Age
this is what happens:
After the battle is over the ship is overwhelmed by fires and explosions, so many that the fire crews/suppression systems cannot contain the blazes so Picard makes the decision to abandon ship. It seems the plan is to decompress the ship through various hatches and vents to extinguish the fire and maybe return to the ship (?.) Once the crew is evacuated one of the engineering crew reports to Picard that not all of the venting hatches have opened and that fire is still raging in the engineering sections of the ship, then he reports that the plutonium containers have ruptured and the radiation contamination is spreading through the ship and they haven't the gear to return to the ship to decontaminate, so the ship is a loss.
They cannot make a connection with the ship's computer to initiate the auto-destruct, the shuttles/escape pods don't have the armaments to destroy the ship tactically, nor can they spare a micro-warp core from a shuttle to destroy the ship. Their only hope is that as they never made a stable orbit around a Jovian planet that the ship will be pulled into the planet and destroyed by the crushing gravity. While they can hasten process with the shuttles the risk of loss of life/equipment not to mention the fuel loss isn't worth the risk.
So they leave the ship abandoned assuming that with in a few days/couple of weeks it'll be pulled down into the Jovian planet.
Now, again, this is from a novel and isn't "canon" but is decent enough "speculative fiction" on what may have happened that sort of tries to explain the abandoning of the ship (they only left the ship "temporarily to try and stop the fires by decompressing the ship) but how the ship ended up not destroyed (the ship became contaminated with radiation they couldn't clean up so they couldn't return; and they couldn't make a connection with the ship to initiate the self-destruct. They assumed the ship would be destroyed within a few days as it got pulled into a nearby planet.) And leaves open the idea how the ship fell into Ferengi hands. (The Ferengi found the ship before it succumbed to the crushing gravity of the Jovian planet, effected radiation clean-up of the ship and Bok then decided to use the ship to try and to get revenge on Picard.... 10 years later.)
The next section of the chapter has Bok finding the ship in a decaying orbit (it seems the ship hit the atmosphere at the right angle, bounced off and entered into a new decaying orbit. Bok recovers the ship and decides to use to get revenge on the loss of his only male heir, against the advice of the crew and without consideration of the profit that could be gained from the secrets and technology in the ship.