Volkswagen ordered to pay $20 mln in Spanish diesel claim

MADRID, Jan 25 (Reuters) - A Spanish court has ordered German carmaker Volkswagen to pay 16.3 million euros ($19.8 million) in compensation to people in Spain who bought cars with emissions-cheating devices installed, consumer group OCU said on Monday.

After a five-year legal battle, a Madrid court found Volkswagen had engaged in anti-competitive business practices and ordered the carmaker to pay 3,000 euros in damages to each OCU member affected, the group said in a statement.

Volkswagen admitted in 2015 to using illegal software to cheat U.S. diesel engine tests, a scandal that has so far cost it more than $30 billion in vehicle refits, fines and provisions.

Nearly all U.S. owners of affected cars agreed to take part in a $25 billion settlement in 2016.

Last year Germany’s highest court for civil disputes ruled Volkswagen had to pay compensation to owners of vehicles with rigged diesel engines in Germany.

The Spanish ruling can be appealed.

Volkswagen was not immediately available for comment.

$1 = 0.8247 euros Reporting by Emma Pinedo. Editing by Nathan Allen and Mark Potter