lohan-cp-9003576

Lindsay Lohan could be charged with stealing a $2,500 necklace reported missing from a jewelry store last month. ((David McNew/Associated Press))

California prosecutors say they plan to charge Lindsay Lohan with felony grand theft of a $2,500 necklace reported stolen from a jewelry store last month — the most serious count the actress has faced in more than three years of trouble with the law.

District Attorney's spokeswoman Jane Robison said Tuesday that the charge will be filed Wednesday. Lohan, 24, is due in Los Angeles court for an arraignment on Wednesday afternoon.

Earlier this month, Los Angeles police said Lohan was under investigation for taking a necklace from a Venice area store later identified as Kamofie and Co. Detectives obtained a search warrant to try to retrieve the item from Lohan's home, but it was turned in to a police station before any search was made.

Robison said bail would be decided by a judge.

A phone message to Lohan's attorney, Shawn Chapman Holley, was not immediately returned. Holley has previously denied any wrongdoing by Lohan.

"We vehemently deny these allegations and, if charges are filed, we will fight them in court, not in the press," Holley said in a statement released Saturday.

Arrested twice in 2007, Lohan was charged with drunken driving and drug possession, but both were misdemeanours.

The Mean Girls star has been jailed three times in that case, but has been granted a quick release due to jail overcrowding and a requirement that bail be set on misdemeanour cases.

Lohan remains on probation for drunken driving, and a judge has threatened to throw her in jail if she runs into trouble again.

Prosecutors in Riverside County have been considering whether to press charges against Lohan for a December altercation with a worker from the Betty Ford Center, where she was being treated.

The treatment, her fifth rehab session, came after she admitted failing a drug test shortly after being granted early release from another treatment program.

Lohan's court struggles and treatment have taken a serious toll on the former Disney star's career. Her role as porn star Linda Lovelace in a biopic was recast last year while Lohan was at Betty Ford and no replacement projects have been announced.