Our Website Uses Cookies 

We and the third parties that provide content, functionality, or business services on our website may use cookies to collect information about your browsing activities in order to provide you with more relevant content and promotional materials, on and off the website, and help us understand your interests and improve the website.

For more information, please contact us or consult our Privacy Notice.

Your binder contains too many pages, the maximum is 40.

We are unable to add this page to your binder, please try again later.

This page has been added to your binder.

José Arvelo specializes in cross-border disputes and has extensive experience representing clients in high-stakes international arbitrations, transnational litigation, and white collar investigations.

Mr. Arvelo has served as counsel and advisor to multinational companies from diverse industries and foreign sovereigns in investor-state and commercial arbitrations, as well as in complex transnational and multi-district litigation in the United States. He has represented clients prosecuting high-value claims in arbitral proceedings conducted in English and Spanish, and has litigated transnational legal disputes in U.S. courts concerning foreign law, the Alien Tort Statute, the Anti-Terrorism Act, and the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act, among other issues.

International Arbitration

  • Represented the claimants in Valores Mundiales, S.L. & Consorcio Andino S.L. v. República Bolivariana de Venezuela (ICSID Case No. ARB/13/11) (Spanish-language proceeding), resulting in an award exceeding $430 million.
  • Represented the claimant in Mobil Cerro Negro v. Petróleos de Venezuela S.A. et al. (ICC Case No. 15415/JRF), resulting in an award exceeding $900 million.
  • Represented the claimants in Mobil Corporation et al. v. Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela (ICSID Case No. ARB/07/27), resulting in an award exceeding $2 billion.


  • Representation of Chiquita Brands International, Inc. and one of its executives in interrelated litigation matters arising out of extortion payments to illegal armed groups in Colombia, including mass-tort claims under the Alien Tort Statute and other laws, insurance coverage disputes, and government investigations. See, e.g., Cardona v. Chiquita Brands Int’l, Inc., 760 F.3d 1185 (11th Cir. 2014).
  • Representation of the Kingdom of Spain in litigation to secure recognition of sovereign immunity and repatriation to Spain of an estimated $600 million in coins and other artifacts removed from a sunken 1804 Spanish Navy Frigate. See, e.g., Odyssey Marine Exploration, Inc. v. Unidentified Shipwrecked Vessel, 657 F.3d 1159 (11th Cir. 2011).
  • Represented a major pharmaceutical company in civil litigation (Spanish-language proceeding).

White Collar Investigations and Anti-Corruption/FCPA

  • Represented a major pharmaceutical company in an investigation by the U.S. Department of Justice and Securities & Exchange Commission relating to its operations in a South American country.
  • Assisted a manufacturing company with an internal investigation into alleged wrongdoing in relation to imports in a South American country.
  • Conducted an anti-corruption risk assessment for a consumer-products company relating to its operations in several South American countries.
  • Advised a multinational company in the consumer brands sector regarding its global anti-corruption compliance program.
  • Assisted a multinational mining company navigate issues relating to a criminal investigation into its operations in a South American country.

Pro Bono

  • Representation of human-trafficking victims in federal litigation.
  • Advice to international non-profit organization on matters involving international criminal law.
  • Representation of Salvadoran national in connection with applications for U.S. immigrant visa and citizenship.
  • Represented an indigent senior citizen in litigation against his former landlord.

Memberships and Affiliations

  • American Society of International Law
  • Hispanic Bar Association of the District of Columbia, Board Member (2014-2016)
  • International Bar Association

Previous Experience

  • U.S. Department of State, Office of International Claims and Investment Disputes, Law Clerk (2006)
  • Congressional Research Service, Foreign Affairs, Defense, and Trade Division, Foreign Policy Clerk (2003)
  • Latinvex, Latin America Rising Legal Star (2020)
  • Legal 500 Latin America, International Arbitration (2015) 
  • Washington DC Super Lawyers, International "Rising Star" (2014-2017)