Feds raid suburban Chicago home of businessman who ran for state office

A federal raid in the southwest suburbs put two people behind bars Monday. They are facing felony charges of theft and loan fraud tied to COVID relief money.

The defendants live in Manhattan, Illinois, but one of the businesses that federal authorities say they used to obtain thousands of dollars in loans is Kee Firearms and Training in New Lenox.

As federal agents descended on the gun store early Monday morning, the business posted on Facebook, "WE ARE CLOSED TODAY!"

Meanwhile, just before 7 a.m., SWAT officers swarmed the home of Jeffrey Regnier and Greta Keranen – the store's owners.

Neighbors described hearing flashbangs and the sound of a battering ram when authorities entered the roughly 5,000-square-foot home.

Combined, Regnier and Keranen are facing 24 felony counts.


Charges include theft, loan fraud, money laundering, and state benefits fraud from April 1, 2020, through January 2021.

Court documents allege that during the pandemic, Regnier and Keranen lied about their income, claimed they were unable to work, and according to the complaint, used Kee Firearms and Training, LLC, and another business, Kee Construction, LLC, to file false applications and obtain thousands of dollars in pandemic relief loans.

The complaint alleges that on April 1, 2020, Regnier and Keranen applied for an Economic Injury Disaster Loan through the Small Business Administration and later received a loan for $150,000. However, in their application, "knowingly employed deception, in that she represented that the defendant Greta Keranen’s business, Kee Constrcution, LLC, had gross revenues of $9,500,000, and cost of goods sold of $8,500,000, for the twelve months prior to 01/31/2020, which defendant Greta Keranen knew to be false."

Another theft charge detailed in the complaint states that Regnier submitted a Work Availability Questionnaire through the Illinois Department of Employment Security on Aug. 6, 2020, in which he stated "he was unable to work due to the COVID-19 pandemic, which the defendant knew to be false, because he was at the same time operating another business, Kee Firearms and Training, LLC." Regnier received unemployment benefits in the amount of $28,908 following that application.

The amounts Regnier and Keranen allegedly received in unemployment benefits, Economic Injury Disaster Loans and Paycheck Protection Program loans totaled to at least $400,000.

Regnier previously ran for election, looking to fill Illinois’ 1st Congressional District seat in the U.S. House, but lost the race last June.