I read the following on abcnews, but couldn't convince myself to accept the past perfect form the sentence. What is the action before which the 'had mailed' part has occurred and completed? And why would he use had given up?
"Abdulfattah "John" Jandali, a Syrian man who fathered Jobs, had emailed his son a few times in a tentative effort to make contact. The father never called the son because he feared Jobs would think the dad who had given him up was now after his fortune."