Miami Law Students Win Prestigious Frankfurt Investment Arbitration Moot Court Championship


Joseph Matthews (3L), Coach Andrew Riccio, Benjamin Keime (2L) & Abirami Ananthasingam (3L)

Joseph Matthews (3L), Coach Andrew Riccio, Benjamin Keime (2L) & Abirami Ananthasingam (3L)

Miami Law’s moot court team was named the winner of the Frankfurt Investment Arbitration Moot Court – a competition, considered one of the most prestigious international student competitions with a focus on investment protection. With this win, Miami Law is the only law school team in history to win this prestigious competition twice. Students Benjamin Keime, 2L, Abirami Ananthasingam, 3L, and Joseph Matthews, 3L tied for first place with the team from Sciences Po (Paris Institute of Political Studies) ) at the competition hosted by Goethe-University Frankfurt in Germany.

Throughout the week of March 10-14, Miami Law competed against 41 teams from all over the world including places such as Bulgaria, China, France, Germany, Greece, India, the United Kingdom, and many others.

This particular Moot Court serves as a platform for students who want to compete on an international level and have a passion for investment protection. Teams present their arguments orally before tribunals of arbitration composed of investment treaty specialists.

Investment protection has increasingly become a hot topic in the international community and has been recognized as one of the more intellectually challenging branches of international law.

“I have worked with Abirami and Joseph for two years already,” said Paula Arias, Director of the International Moot Court Program. “They competed last year on a different Moot and we won best oralist and best memorial. The students wanted to compete again because they enjoyed it so much. So this year, I decided to give them the opportunity, and I selected them, along with Benjamin, to compete in Frankfurt. I knew they would work hard and do everything necessary to succeed in Germany. And I was not wrong.”

The Miami Law team was judged by arbitrators Charles Brower of 20 Essex Street, Abby Cohen-Smutney of White & Case, and Judge Awn Al-Khasaweh of the International Court of Justice.

L Andrew Riccio, JD ’11, whose team competed at Frankfurt in 2011 and won, helped coached this year’s team. "It was an honor and a pleasure for me to return to Frankfurt after competing for the 2011 Miami Law winning team," said Riccio, an associate with Assouline & Berlowe, where he practices international arbitration and litigation. "Coaching this talented team was a fantastic experience and I am, of course, so thrilled with the outcome."

“Andrew started working with the team over the summer; it was the first time he was leading the team as coach, which makes me extremely happy because I can see how much the students can learn from former students,” said Arias. “I have only words of appreciation for all the dedication Andrew put into this year's team.”

“The International Moot Court Program prepares our students to be great lawyers and gives UM recognition as a great school in international law.”