Report on the Third International Roman Law Moot Court Competition

The Third International Roman Law Moot Court Competition, organised and co-sponsored by the Institute of Mohammed Ali and the Municipality of Philippi, took place on 25–28 March 2010 in Kavala, in the splendid Imaret Hotel and in the Forum of ancient Philippi. Eight university teams participated: Athens, Cambridge, Liège, Naples, Oxford, Trier, Tübingen and Vienna. The competition was tough this year, several teams intent at a revanche after last year (Trier even attending last year’s Oxford-Cambridge Moot to see how to do it). A great and pleasant surprise was Athens, which presented a very strong team. The attractive case was set up by Paschalis Paschalidis and David Kästle and built around a swap deal anno 547 AD between two brothers engaged in the slave trade (and set on ruining each other, being of contrary views on the desirability of slavery), a not so easy to determine legal construction, combined with a case of injury. It offered ample opportunity to show legal insight and skills.

After the preliminary rounds Oxford was placed first in Group I, while Athens was first in Group II, Tübingen and Vienna being second. In the semi-finals, Oxford lost by a narrow margin to Vienna, but gained the upper hand over Tübingen in the Small Final and finished in third place. Athens beat Vienna in the Grand Final. Scott Coleman of the Oxford team carried the third Best Oralist Prize. The prizes were distributed at the Clifford Chance European Private Law Dinner in Imaret. All in all it is a very fine result. Since this competition started the participating universities have steadily improved their mooting and some are very strong now – it of course makes the competition all the more attractive. That Oxford is holding its place among the best is one more great compliment to its team, comprising Scott Coleman (Brasenose), Stephen Du (Trinity), Emily Hancox (Worcester) and Hannah Ilett (Jesus) and their coach Ben Spagnolo, whom we very much congratulate with their splendid achievement.