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The police used a messaging app to search for the parents of a seven-month old boy who was kidnapped from Azad Maidan on Wednesday.

Why has the reporter used was instead of had been?

It should be:

The police used a messaging app to search for the parents of a seven-month old boy who had been kidnapped from Azad Maidan on Wednesday .

Justification

Had been (the past perfect) is used to describe an action that happened in past in past. In the above sentence, the first activity was kidnapping and the second activity was sending the message. Hence, the reporter should use had been, but instead he used was. Please explain.

Actual Activity

Wednesday morning ---> Boy was kidnapped

Wednesday afternoon ---> Police used messaging app to search for parents

Reported speech

Wednesday morning ---> Boy had been kidnapped

Wednesday afternoon ---> Police used messaging app to search for parents

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"Had been kidnapped" implies that the kidnapping happened but is now over, specifically "had been" says that the existence of the state (of being kidnapped) is now in the past, ergo, the kidnapping is now over.

"Was kidnapped" states that this happened without further implication as to whether the state has changed again.

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We use the past perfect when we want to make an emphasis on referring to an action that occurred before another action in the past. However, in this statement both of the actions are so closely related that whether we use was kidnapped or had been kidnapped, there occurs no change in the meaning. There are many cases where we can use either the past simple or the past perfect, without any difference in meaning, such as "he went to the counter after he filled or had filled the basket. It sounds good if we avoid the use of the past perfect where the past simple will do. So it sounds more natural if we use was kidnapped in this statement.

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