Via Ars Technica:
That has now changed. Since February, all of the direct photo links that were sent to me by Ars readers disappeared, and I began deleting my own photos again from Facebook’s site to see how long it would take for them to be removed from the CDN. I tested this with two photos while saving their direct URLs, and both photos became inaccessible within two days of deletion.
Facebook just hates doing anything that would garner trust.