A Casper man is accused of entering false merchandise returns into the registers at his place of employment and pocketing the money.

Nathan Arias has pleaded not guilty to one charge of theft.

Investigators with the Casper Police Department say in middle February 2014, the manager of the business noticed that sales for one day were down about $400, about three hours after it had been previously checked.

The manager noticed two large returns had been made within minutes of each other...both of them made by Arias and after a further search, a number of other returns involving Arias, were discovered dating back to December 2013.

The items allegedly returned were items that the company either sells or stocks in small quantities or were items out of season.

In some instances, the number of items returned, was more than what the business usually kept in stock.

After reviewing security camera footage, when the return was made, there was no customer at register...only Arias, who eventually was fired and he signed a confession.

He said he did it because of his mother's health problems and medical bills.

Arias is free on a $3,000 PR bond, and could face up to 10 years in prison if convicted.