As court cases go, this was hardly a run-of-the-mill contract quarrel. The parties were major airline companies from France and Libya. Their contract stated that any dispute was to be resolved by arbitration in Montreal. Oh, and the French company was arguing the contract did not apply in light of UN sanctions placed on Libya after the 1998 terrorist bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland.
For newly minted lawyer Frédéric Bachand, the 1999 case was not only a baptism by fire in the world of international commercial arbitration, it was also an opportunity to participate first-hand in an emerging field of law—one in which he has since become a world authority.