07/16/2013 09:12 EDT | Updated 09/15/2013 05:12 EDT

Jamaica PM says gov't standing by athletes after positive doping tests, Italy police raid

KINGSTON, Jamaica - Jamaica's leader says the Caribbean country is standing by its athletes after two of the island's marquee sprinters and three others tested positive for banned substances.

In a Tuesday speech in Jamaica's Parliament, Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller said the government values the "significant contributions they make toward engendering national pride."

But she says Jamaican athletes "need to be far more vigilant" about taking supplements which could possibly contain prohibited substances.

Former 100-meter world-record holder Asafa Powell and Olympic gold medallist Sherone Simpson have tested positive for the stimulant oxilofrone.

On Monday, Italian police confiscated unidentified substances in a raid on the hotel where the two sprinters and their physical trainer Christopher Xuereb of Toronto were staying.

They were formally placed under criminal investigation for allegedly violating Italy's doping laws.