Lohan 'wants no-contest theft plea'

Lohan 'wants no-contest theft plea'

Lindsay Lohan wants to enter a no-contest plea to end a criminal case filed over a £1,500 necklace reported stolen, a source close to the actress says.

The source, who is familiar with Lohan’s criminal case but was not authorised to comment publicly, says the troubled actress wants to put the case behind her so she can focus on her career.

No court date has been set for Lohan to enter the plea. She is due to return to a Los Angeles court for a pre-trial hearing on May 11, but is hoping to resolve the case before then, the source said.

By pleading no contest, Lohan would not be admitting guilt and it was not immediately clear if she would face any additional penalties.

The 'Mean Girls' actress has already been sentenced to four months in jail for a probation violation related to the theft case. She is free on bail.

In February prosecutors charged Lohan with felony grand theft over allegations that she took the necklace from Kamofie & Co, a jewellery store near her home in Los Angeles’ Venice neighbourhood. The charge was reduced last week by Los Angeles Superior Court judge Stephanie Sautner.

Authorities said the theft occurred about three weeks after Lohan, 24, was released from court-ordered rehab at the Betty Ford Centre.

Lohan’s assistant turned the necklace in to authorities after police obtained a search warrant to retrieve it from Lohan’s house, but before detectives were able to conduct the search.

Judge Sautner said during an April 22 hearing that she thought Lohan’s actions were brazen, but did not think the case warranted a felony prosecution because many other cases involving more serious allegations are reduced to misdemeanours.

Deputy district attorney Danette Meyers said she thought the ruling was an “abuse of discretion” and her office may appeal.

A little over a week ago, Judge Sautner sentenced Lohan to 120 days in jail and nearly 500 hours of community service for violating the terms of her probation by taking the necklace. Lohan was on probation for a 2007 drink-driving case.

She was released to pursue an appeal but has not yet filed a formal motion to try to get the sentence reduced.

In all likelihood, Lohan would serve a fraction of her four-month sentence - possibly as little as three weeks – due to jail overcrowding.

The source said Lohan’s intention to plead no contest was aimed at making good on her statement to Tonight Show host Jay Leno earlier this week that she wanted to take responsibility for her actions.

The plea was first reported yesterday by celebrity website TMZ.

The actress’s career has been mostly stalled for the past year as she struggled to deal with the terms of her sentence in the drink-driving case. She recently accepted a two-film deal to appear in a pair of mob movies, including a biopic of the infamous Gotti family.

She will portray the wife of John Gotti Jr in the film 'Gotti: Three Generations' that also stars John Travolta and Joe Pesci.

In a recent interview she said she hoped the role would help her return to being known more as an actress than a tabloid mainstay.

“I’m really excited to be back on set and clear up all the misinterpretations about me and show this is what I love to do,” Lohan said of her new roles.

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