Criminal Law Questions? Ask a Criminal Lawyer.
The only option would be to try to reopen the case based on an ineffective assistance of counsel claim, but that is a steep, steep hill in most cases and likely insurmountable in yours. The elements are:
1). Counsel's performance was not just a matter of quality, but that Counsel's representation of the Defendant was so seriously deficient that Counsel was not acting as a Counsel, and his action(s) or lack thereof, denied the defendant his Sixth Amendment Right (guarantee) to Counsel.2). Counsel's performance, or lack thereof, prejudiced the defense so as to deprive the defendant(s) of a fair trial, and the verdict and/or result(s) that a fair trial would have rendered.
1). Counsel's performance was not just a matter of quality, but that Counsel's representation of the Defendant was so seriously deficient that Counsel was not acting as a Counsel, and his action(s) or lack thereof, denied the defendant his Sixth Amendment Right (guarantee) to Counsel.
2). Counsel's performance, or lack thereof, prejudiced the defense so as to deprive the defendant(s) of a fair trial, and the verdict and/or result(s) that a fair trial would have rendered.
The problem is that you entered a plea. At the time of the plea you were instructed by the court about your rights and asked if you understood them. That colloquy will be recorded in the audio transcript of the hearing. Because of this, there is a 99.99% chance that any challenge would be fruitless.
Unfortunately, what you have been previously advised is also true and that this event can't be sealed or expunged.
The only other option would be a pardon. This will not erase your record, but the pardon will appear next to the charge.
Please let me know, if you have follow-up questions.
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I wish I could give you some more concrete and direct assistance regarding productive measures to take. I'm afraid your ineffective assistance claim would be a waste of your time, energy and money. The way the criminal "justice" system is constructed, I'm afraid the case would have no affec. One option to address the way you were handled, however, which just ocurred to me, would be to file an ethics complaint against your attorney. You can do so here:
That could be a way to make the public statement, without taxing yourself mentally and financially.
The pardon is not insignificant, but leaves the interpretation up to the viewer. It might lead to questions being asked, which gives you the opportunity to state your case. Most people dislike the the legal profession and the "justice" system, so it could create empathy.
Finally, your expungement should not appear! That's the whole purpose of the expungement. That needs to be addressed asap.
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