Not likely but you should consult with an appeals attorney.
Joseph A. Lo Piccolo, Esq.
Immediate Past President, Criminal Courts Bar Association 11'-12'
Hession Bekoff & Lo Piccolo
1103 Stewart Ave, Suite 200
Garden City, NY 11530
516-408-3666 (o) / 516-408-3833 (f)
I am a criminal defense attorney practicing in Nassau, Suffolk and New York City. The above information is not a substitution for a meeting whereas all potential legal issues can be discussed.
If you fall under some very specific grounds you can make a motion to vacate the plea and sentence. It is very difficult, there is a limited chance of success and the attempt can be expensive. Good luck.
I have been a criminal defense attorney in New York for almost 25 years. website: Brooklynlaw.net Phone #: 718-208-6094 email: email@example.com. This answer is only for informational purposes and is not meant as legal advice.
This is a problem we have dealt with many times when consulted by immigration lawyers whose clients are trying to un-do an old conviction to avoid deportation. The responses you have been given thus far are generally correct, but, as one poster states there are some narrow exceptions. The first thing we do is obtain and review the court file and also obtain a copy of the transcript of the guilty plea proceedings (although if not already transcribed these are sometimes difficult to track down after many years). Many judges are sloppy in the manner in which they take guilty pleas and fail to ask all the questions that are required to demonstrate that the plea was entered knowingly and intelligently and was supported by an adequate factual statement by the defendant. If the plea was constitutionally inadequate you may have a basis -- even after 17 years -- to vacate the plea.