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    #1

    was vs. got

    Which are correct:

    1) He was kidnapped to ask for ransom.
    2) He got kidnapped to ask for ransom.
    MEANING: The people who kidnapped him did so to ask for ransom.

    3) He was kidnapped to scare the other dissidents.
    4) He got kidnapped to scare the other dissidents.

    It seems to me that '2' and '4' mean that he deliberately got kidnapped!

    Gratefully,
    Navi.

  1. Skrej's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: was vs. got

    I don't find either #1 or #2 to be natural. I'd suggest "He was kidnapped for ransom." The definition of 'ransom' implies the act of asking.

    As to the got/was question - I suppose 'got' could mean a deliberate attempt by the person being kidnapped, but it would be a most unusual situation.

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    #3

    Re: was vs. got

    Thank you very much Skrej,

    Would you say that '3' and '4' both work?

    Gratefully.
    Navi.

  2. Skrej's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: was vs. got

    They both work in AmE, although I prefer #3.

    I suspect #4 may not be acceptable in BrE.

  3. Eckaslike's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: was vs. got

    I think you're right Skrej.

    The third one works. To me, the fourth one seems to mean that he had himself kidnapped.

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    #6

    Re: was vs. got

    All kidnaps are for ransom, aren't they?
    I am not a teacher.

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    #7

    Re: was vs. got

    Thank you all very much,

    I don't think all kidnaps are for ransom. You have human trafficking and other horrid things as well.

    Respectfully,
    Navi.

  4. Skrej's Avatar
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    #8

    Re: was vs. got

    No, sometimes the kidnapper just wants the person, not any money.

    For example there are non-custodial kidnappings, which is where an adult who does not have legal guardianship of a minor takes the child to raise as their own. Even if the kidnapper is the child's parent, and the child goes consensually, as long as the adult doesn't have legal custody of the child then it's still considered kidnapping. Reputedly, these are the hardest kidnapping cases to solve, simply because the victim doesn't want to be found.

    There have been many cases where a woman is kidnapped simply for sexual purposes with no attempt at ransom. I'm sure there are probably other reasons to kidnap somebody besides ransom.

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