SIOUX CITY -- A man who worked as the Ickey Nickel Bar & Grill's head chef has pleaded not guilty to making unauthorized purchases of meat and cheese for personal use and embezzling more than $46,000 from the business.

Carlos Barrera, 52, entered his written plea Wednesday in Woodbury County District Court to one count of first-degree theft.

According to court documents, Barrera made an estimated 53 unauthorized purchases of beef chuck rolls, pork butts and feathered mozzarella cheese totaling $46,057 from Staber Meats between May 9, 2017, and Nov. 9, 2017. 

Barrera would order large quantities of the items and load them into his vehicle, then sign invoices allowing Staber Meats to automatically withdraw the funds from the Ickey Nickel's bank account, court documents said. Barrera never brought the supplies to the bar.

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