File picture: Rahman Safi/Xinhua

Rome - A high-profile 'Ndrangheta Mafia suspect who spent more than seven years in Canada as a fugitive has been arrested following a forced repatriation to Italy.

Tito Figliomeni, 49, was arrested at Rome Fiumicino airport after flying in from Toronto, where he lived under a fake identity since September 2010, Italian police said in a statement.

The suspected mobster, who escaped to Canada three months before Italian prosecutors issued an arrest warrant for him for Mafia membership, was arrested in Toronto on March 10 for breaking immigration laws.

According to Italian police, he is "one of the leading members" of a crime group affiliated to the Commisso crime family, one of the most influential within the 'Ndrangheta.

Based in Calabria, the region that forms the tip of Italy's boot, the 'Ndrangheta has long been known to have made major inroads abroad, including in Germany and North America.

According to Italian authorities, it is the world's most powerful Mafia organization and has surpassed Sicily's Cosa Nostra as the leading smuggler of cocaine in Europe.