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Comverse Technology Execs Resign Amid Options Probe

The CEO and two other executives at Comverse Technology Inc. resigned Monday amid a company probe of the timing of stock-option grants at the maker of telecommunications systems and software.

The resignations come two weeks after Comverse said it would delay filing its 2005 annual report and expected to restate results back to 2001 due to issues stemming from the timing of stock-option grants. In a statement Monday, Comverse said the departing executives will cooperate with a special board committee that is reviewing the grants.

Founder Kobi Alexander stepped down from his roles as chairman and CEO, while David Kreinberg resigned as chief financial officer. William F. Sorin also resigned from his roles as senior general counsel and corporate secretary. The three former executives will serve as advisers on an interim basis.

As a result of the resignations, independent director Raz Alon was named interim CEO. Avi T. Aronovitz, vice president of finance and treasurer, was appointed interim CFO, and independent director Ron Hiram assumes the role of non-executive chairman. Paul L. Robinson, vice president of legal and general counsel, will become executive vice president, chief administrative officer, general counsel and corporate secretary.

Alexander, Kreinberg and Sorin also stepped down from their board and committee positions with Verint Systems Inc. New York-based Comverse is the majority owner of Verint's stock.

Comverse shares rose 65 cents, or 2.9 percent, to $23.30 in early trading on the Nasdaq. The stock has been trading in a 52-week range of $21.33 to $29.64.