Feeds

Fugitive tech CEO settles backdating case with SEC for $53m

Now can I come home from Namibia?

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

A former tech firm CEO has finally settled a stock backdating case with the Feds, almost five years after skipping the US and heading to the South West African bolthole of Namibia.

Jacob "Kobi" Alexander, co-founder and former chairman and CEO of Comverse, will pay the SEC $47.6m in disgorgement and prejudgment interest and a $6m penalty.

Alexander will also be "permanently enjoined from violating the antifraud and related provisions of the federal securities laws and will be permanently barred from serving as an officer or director of a public company".

It is thought the settlement is a prelude to a likely deal with prosecutors that would allow Alexander to end almost five years of self-imposed exile in Namibia.

All of this has been agreed without Alexander "admitting or denying the allegations", though the agreement prohibits him being an officer or director of a public company.

Alexander fell foul of the SEC back in 2006 when the agency launched a massive crackdown on stock options backdating - this was the practice common among Silicon Valley companies and others of backdating stock options for new hires to make them as lucrative as possible. While not neccessarily illegal at the time, the practice was seen as harmful to shareholders, particularly when they were not kept up to speed on the details of the grants.

In Alexander's case, the SEC charged that Alexander, and two others, backdated options to benefit themselves, as well as others.

It also alleged that he "created a slush fund of backdated options by causing options to be granted to fictitious employees, and later used these options, some of which were made immediately exercisable, to recruit and retain key personnel".

Alexander and two others resigned from voicemail provider Comverse in May 2006 amidst the SEC investigation. The exec, who had dual US-Israeli citizenship, then decided not to wait around for the Feds to ponder their investigation and instead decided to skip to Namibia, via Sri Lanka.

He was finally tracked down when the Feds intercepted a Skype call he had made. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Ex-US Navy fighter pilot MIT prof: Drones beat humans - I should know
'Missy' Cummings on UAVs, smartcars and dying from boredom
Facebook, Apple: LADIES! Why not FREEZE your EGGS? It's on the company!
No biological clockwatching when you work in Silicon Valley
The 'fun-nification' of computer education – good idea?
Compulsory code schools, luvvies love it, but what about Maths and Physics?
Doctor Who's Flatline: Cool monsters, yes, but utterly limp subplots
We know what the Doctor does, stop going on about it already
'Cowardly, venomous trolls' threatened with TWO-YEAR sentences for menacing posts
UK government: 'Taking a stand against a baying cyber-mob'
Happiness economics is bollocks. Oh, UK.gov just adopted it? Er ...
Opportunity doesn't knock; it costs us instead
Sysadmin with EBOLA? Gartner's issued advice to debug your biz
Start hoarding cleaning supplies, analyst firm says, and assume your team will scatter
Don't bother telling people if you lose their data, say Euro bods
You read that right – with the proviso that it's encrypted
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Cloud and hybrid-cloud data protection for VMware
Learn how quick and easy it is to configure backups and perform restores for VMware environments.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.