Fabien Neretse was born in Ruhengeri, Rwanda, in 1957. Influential businessman and bureaucrat during the regime of Habyarimana – the Rwandan President whose murder on 6 April 1994 is usually indicated as the official start of the Rwandan genocide – Neretse was, from 1989 to 1991, the Head of the Rwandan Authority for Coffee (OCIR-Café), the governmental office in charge of the coffee exportations. He was also a member of the former Rwandan Armed Forces (ex-FAR), with the rank of Lieutenant.
According to the allegations against him, Neretse is one of the founders of the Interahamwe, the pro-Hutu militia which was very much involved in the massacres in Rwanda. He would have provided them with weapons, means of transportation and money to finance the genocide.
He is suspected of having directly participated in the genocide campaign, particularly in the planning of the massacres committed on the Mataba hill, and in actions perpetrated in the provinces of Ruhengeri, Gisenyi and Ndiza.
Neretse is also suspected of having denounced several Tutsi families trying to escape from Rwanda in the early days of the genocide, so determining their capture and subsequent execution. According to some witnesses, he was present when the executions were carried out. He is in particular accused of having caused the death of a Belgian national, Claire Beckers, who on 9 April 1994 was trying to escape from Kigali with her husband Isaïe Bucyana and her daughter Katia. Upon information allegedly provided by Neretse, the Belgian-Rwandan family was arrested at a roadblock and summarily executed. The sister of Claire Beckers filed on the same year a complaint in Belgium against persons unknown.
After the end of the genocide Neretse fled to France where, in order not to be recognized, he used a fake name. He settled in Angouleme, where he lived quietly as Fabien Nsabimana until 2011. He become actively involved in the social life of his neighborhood, and he addressed to the Prefect of the town a report containing some proposals to solve the problem of juvenile delinquency.
The “Collectif des parties civiles pour le Rwanda” (CPCR), a French NGO, filed a complaint against him already in 2000, but the subsequent investigations were discontinued because he was not found on the French territory.
On 8 August 2007 Martin Ngoga, Attorney General of the Republic of Rwanda, indicted Neretse on six counts, including genocide and criminal conspiracy. He addressed the indictment and an arrest warrant to France, requesting Neretse extradition. The arrest warrant was also circulated through Interpol.