With playoff-round victories over the University of Michigan and the University of Georgia, the Harvard Law School Jessup International Law Moot Court team won the U.S. Championship of the 2002 Phillip C. Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition. Despite being defeated in the international semi-finals by eventual champion South Africa, the team captured the award for best combined memorials, and third-year student David Mascari and LL.M. candidate Jin-long Pao were named fifth and eighth best oralists, respectively.

“Participating in the Jessup Competition has been one of the most meaningful experiences in my time at Harvard Law School–both in terms of growth in the law and friendships made,” said Mascari. “I learned volumes about the nitty-gritty of international litigation, and sharpened my oral presentation skills. And we got to compete against brilliant young lawyers from all over the world.”

Harvard won the right to represent the northeast region of the United States after claiming victory in the regional championship held in February. This is the fourth consecutive year that a team from Harvard Law School has attended the International Rounds which this year included 75 teams from 61 nations. Harvard Law School’s team consisted of Mascari, Pao, third-year student William Burke-White, second-year student Natalie Reid, and first-year student Benjamin Wilkinson.

Widely recognized as the most prestigious international law moot court competition in the world, the Jessup was co-founded by Harvard Law School in 1959. Focusing on issues of public international law, this year’s problem contained issues of extraterritorial application of Internet legislation, state responsibility for terrorism, and international human rights law.