From the time of his arrest, a record of the unfolding events was kept by Fr Benicio,22 the local Oblate Parish Priest. A decision was made to enquire about Br Ramon in his various postings, because of a rumour that he had been asked to move on a previous occasion for inappropriate behaviour.
Br Ramon had worked in a hostel for homeless emigrants in London. He was employed as an assistant. According to Fr Benicio, the Director of the hostel, Declan Rafferty,23 reported that he had had concerns about Br Ramon: He said he wasn’t happy about the way [Ramon] related to the residents – he either liked them or he didn’t like them, there was no in-between. Twice it was brought to his attention that [Ramon] was in the rooms of residents after 1.00 am when they should have been asleep. He tackled him about this. He became particularly friendly with younger boys when they came. [Declan] had no concrete evidence of inappropriate behaviour but felt he was unsuitable to be working with young people. He said he told [Pierre]24 at the time that he should not be sent to a place where there were young people.
Following Br Ramon’s conviction on charges of sexually abusing boys, the obvious question arose in the Congregation as to whether he had engaged in such activities in his previous postings, including Daingean. Before he was assigned to a boys’ college in Wales, he had served for 10 years in an emigrants’ hostel in London, where he came under suspicion. In response to a query as to whether any investigation into Br Ramon’s activities in Daingean had taken place in 1997, the Oblates stated in a letter dated 8th May 2008 to the Committee: Fr [Benicio] himself followed up the inquiry referred to in the note of 6 March 1997. He did so by speaking with Fr [Luca]. Fr [Luca] indicated to him that there were no accusations against Br [Ramon], apart for an accusation that had been discounted at the time it occurred as being unfounded Fr [Arador]28 has no recollection of the matter being raised with him. Fr [Javier]29 has no specific recollection of being asked to enquire into the matter, however he is now aware that in [the mid-1960s] an allegation was made against Br [Ramon] which was fully investigated by both An Garda Siochana and the Oblates at the time and was dismissed as unfounded. With that exception, Br [Ramon] had a clean record at St Conleth’s. At the time of our letter dated the 21st of December 2006 we understood that Fr [Javier], as Provincial, did not know of the incident the basis of the accusation in [the mid-1960s], but it appears that he learnt of it around the time of the trial in [the late 1990s].