Two years after being arrested at the Tehama Golf Club in Carmel, California, Neal Morton was sentenced to 19 months in federal prison. And before he heard his fate, he heard from a pretty intimidating witness.

According to the Monterey Herald, Clint Eastwood, the owner of the golf club, spoke at the sentencing hearing – and not in favour of the 50-year-old Morton.

Years ago Eastwood, at the behest of a business partner, paid to send Morton, then a golf cart driver, to college to study accounting. Eventually Morton worked his way up to being director of business affairs at Eastwood’s club. At least, until he was caught embezzling money.

Morton was discovered to have stolen at least $182,000 by writing petty cash cheques and forging co-workers’ signatures over a five-year period. A deeper investigation showed that through redirected funds, he may have stolen hundreds of thousands more.

“I’m sort of overwhelmed by the gravity of what I’ve done,” Morton said. “I really want to get over this and one day look at myself in the mirror … and hope that the victims can forgive me as well.”

It seems like the Oscar-winning director is going to need more time for that to happen.

“No good deed goes unpunished,” Eastwood said in court.