Tokyo District Court sent a 28 U.S.C. s.1782 letter rogatory to the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California. Defendants argued that the letter did not fulfill the requirements of s.1782 because it was not assisting a "tribunal"; Tokyo District Court issued the letter upon request from the Tokyo District Public Prosecutor's Office, which according to the plaintiffs meant that the court was serving an administrative function.
The court found that while s.1782 was not designed to assist "foreign governmental bodies whose purpose is to conduct investigations unrelated to judicial or quasi-judicial controversies," Tokyo District Court was a tribunal within the meaning of s.1782.
As one can see from this case, s.1782 is interpreted very broadly.