Convicted Comverse CEO Kobi Alexander, Serving Prison Sentence in the U.S., to Transfer to Israel

In November, Mr. Alexander appealed to be transferred to an Israeli prison, where he could have a third of his term reduced for ‘good behavior’

Moshe Gorali and Tomer Ganon 12:5607.12.17

The Israeli Minister of Justice Ayelet Shaked and the Israeli Minister of Public Security Gilad Erdan approved the request of Jacob “Kobi” Alexander, founder and former CEO of telecommunications company Comverse Technology, Inc., to be transferred to an Israeli prison and serve the remainder of his term there.


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Mr. Alexander is serving time in the U.S. for fraud. In November, Calcalist reported that Mr. Alexander has appealed to Israeli and U.S. authorities requesting to be transferred to Israel, which he is entitled to as an Israeli citizen, based on a treaty between the U.S. and Israel. Mr. Alexander is represented in Israel by lawyer and former justice minister David Libai.

Kobi Alexander. Photo: Zadok Yehezkeli Kobi Alexander. Photo: Zadok Yehezkeli


Mr. Alexander was sentenced by the Federal Court of New York in February to 30 months at Allenwood penitentiary in Pennsylvania, after being charged with fraud pertaining to the timing of Comverse stock option grants. He was first charged with these offenses in 2006 but has escaped to Namibia, where he lived for a decade. Mr. Alexander returned to the U.S. in August 2016 after the U.S. Department of Justice offered him an amended plea bargain.



Once he is transferred to Israel, Mr. Alexander could have a third of his term deducted for good behavior, according to Israeli law. This means that Mr. Alexander could be released from jail just months after his transfer. In the U.S., prisoners get only a 15% of their prison terms deducted for good behavior.


Mr. Alexander founded Comverse Technology in Tel Aviv 1982 as a small startup that grew to become a multinational provider of telecommunication software with over 5,000 employees. The company was listed on Nasdaq in 1986.


This article has been updated on January 7, 2018. A previous version of this article incorrectly stated the offenses with which Mr. Alexander was charged.

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