Benassi/Splash News Online
Ken Lee
February 13, 2011 03:30 PM

The necklace Lindsay Lohan allegedly stole is nowhere near $2,500 in value, her attorney said Sunday, and insists the actress was incorrectly charged with felony grand theft.

“We intend to challenge the prosecution’s case because the truth is, Ms. Lohan didn’t steal anything,” her lawyer Shawn Holley tells PEOPLE. “But even if she had, it seems to me that the appropriate charge, based on the fair market value of the goods, should have been petty theft and not grand theft.”

She added, “A $5 lump of coal with a $2,500 price tag is still a $5 lump of coal.”

Lohan was charged with grand theft on Feb. 9, which by definition means the prosecution believes the item in question is worth over $950. Anything less would amount to petty theft, a misdemeanor that carries a maximum penalty of six months in county jail.

The actress, 24, who pleaded not guilty to the charges, faces another hearing on Feb. 23. If convicted, the maximum penalty would be three years in state prison, although legal experts doubt Lohan would receive prison time if convicted.

In a separate case, the actress remains under investigation by Riverside County, Calif., prosecutors for alleged battery of a Betty Ford Center employee.

It remains to be seen whether her new judge, Keith L. Schwartz, will eventually find Lohan in violation of her DUI probation, which could potentially send her back to jail even without a conviction in either the theft case or battery investigation.

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