Village chief Aroonsri Kanma told Phuketwan this afternoon: ''If he has said he is sorry and will pay for the damages, I am happy to let it rest.''
Another resident, Norm Yenjid, added: ''I am prepared to believe he is sorry but I cannot speak for others.''
The conciliatory comments came as jailed Russian Oleg Fomenko revealed through a Phuket envoy that he was sorry for the damage to the statue of the monk and was prepared to pay the 310,000 baht cost of repairs.
Residents who live in Karon massed at the temple on Friday after the vandalism and demanded that Mr Fomenko be brought there within seven days to apologise.
Deputy Russian honorary consul Santi Udomkiratak said today that many among the 3000 Russian expats on Phuket were upset at the sacrilege and hoped it would not affect their relationship with locals.
''I am a Buddhist so I can understand how the residents feel,'' Khun Santi said. He visited Mr Fomenko in Phuket Prison today with a small group of concerned Russians.
Mr Fomenko told them he had just two cocktails to drink on the night the damage was done, but could not remember anything.
''I apologise and I will respond about the cost,'' Mr Fomenko told Khun Santi.
Mr Fomenko has yet to be bailed. Karon police were concerned that his safety could be at risk if he was taken to Karon temple to apologise.