Peter A Allard School of Law

Peter Burns Mock Trial Competition 2020 Recap

Nikos Harris, KC

Nikos Harris, KC

Associate Professor of Teaching

Dec 8, 2020

On Friday, November 13, 2020 the annual Peter Burns Mock Trial Competition was held at Allard Law. In this trial moot, student teams litigate a complex mock trial which includes four witnesses and opening and closing submissions. Two lawyers and a judge coach each pair of students during practice sessions held one evening a week at the Robson Square courthouse.  

Participants standing in classroom
Participants: Mark Bakhet, Lisa Baek, Joshua Vissia, Timothy Chang, Kelvin Zhu, Max Wall, Kasra Behnampour, and Ryman Yeung

Against all odds, we were able to have the team practices and Competition held in-person with a variety of safety measures in place. Many thanks to Dean pro tem Janine Benedet and Allard Law Director of HR and Operations Lia Cosco for all their work in helping formulate our safety plans. Team coaches, friends and family were able to follow the Competition live on Zoom thanks to the exceptional work of Allard staff Rohan Sheehan and Michelle Burchill. Many thanks also to Chief Judge Melissa Gillespie for providing special approval for us to use of the downtown courtrooms for practices. The entire Provincial Court has been a strong supporter of this Competition for many, many years. 

The students did an amazing job in the Competition before the distinguished panel of Judge Reginald Harris, Judge Deanne Gaffar and Judge Robin McQuillan. Please congratulate all of this year’s mooters: Mark Bakhet, Lisa Baek, Joshua Vissia, Timothy Chang, Kelvin Zhu, Max Wall, Kasra Behnampour, and Ryman Yeung. The winners of the Competition were Mark Bakhet, Lisa Baek, Kelvin Zhu, and Kasra Behnampour. These students will go on to represent the Allard School of Law in the MacIntyre Cup (the Western Canada Moot Competition) next term. Individual award winners at the Competition were Timothy Chang for best cross-examination, Ryman Yeung for best jury address, and Kasra Behnampour won the Spirit of the Burns Award.

The Peter Burns Mock Trial Competitions would not be possible without the commitment and dedication of our volunteers, which include members of the judiciary, counsel and law students. The Faculty would like to thank everyone involved, including the following:

Event Sponsors: The Crown Counsel Association and Joven Narwal

Coaches: Judge Jahani, Mark Crisp, Scott Wright, Judge Oulton, Dianne Wiedemann, Rebecca McConchie, Judge Bahen, Anthony Toljanich, Kristy Neurauter, Judge Challenger, Mark Myhre,  Brent Anderson

Allard Law Coordinator: Nikos Harris

Downtown Coordinator: Mark Myhre

Judges for the Final Trials: Judge Harris, Judge Gaffar, Judge McQuillan

Dress Rehearsal Judges: Judge Jahani, Judge Challenger

The Chief Judge of the Provincial Court of British Columbia

Volunteer clerks: Burns Moot Alumni Elise Kohno, Olivia Whynot

Allard School of Law staff: Michelle Burchill, Rohan Sheehan, Lia Cosco, Charlotte Juras, Julie Carlsten

Allard Law Students Playing Witnesses: Emma Raume, Tunç Dogan, Jenny Gu, Emory Wells, Catherine Li, René Allain, Simran Persic, Kenny Wu

  • Allard School of Law
Nikos Profile

Nikos Harris, KC

Associate Professor of Teaching

Nikos Harris is an award-winning professor who also has extensive experience as appellate counsel. He has authored numerous articles on issues in criminal law and evidence, and his writing has been cited in a number of trial and appellate judgments. Nikos has served as a guest speaker for a number of organizations including Continuing Legal Education, the Trial Lawyers Association, and Crown Counsel of British Columbia. He is also is an advocacy advisor for the Supreme Court Advocacy Institute which assists counsel in preparing submissions for the Supreme Court of Canada.

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