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US Elections 2016: Trump camp slams 'Gestapo tactics' after Cruz sweeps all Colorado delegates

Washington: Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump's new convention manager accused Ted Cruz's campaign of using "Gestapo tactics" after the Texas senator swept the party's convention-delegate selection process in Colorado.

Cruz picked up all 34 delegates on offer in Colorado, where Republicans in 2015 decided to cancel its primary, and instead held a series of caucuses. Cruz had already picked up 21 delegates and the final 13 were chosen at the end of a day-long convention Saturday in Colorado Springs.

Cruz is trying to deny Trump enough delegates to be nominated on the first ballot in Cleveland. As of Sunday Trump led the race with 743 delegates. Cruz had 545 including the weekend's pickups, while Ohio Governor John Kasich lagged far behind at 143.

Colorado's 34 delegates are a small fraction of the 1,237 required to win the nomination but take on more significance than usual with a contested convention becoming more likely. The next Republican contest is in New York on April 19.

Trump's new convention manager Paul Manafort said Cruz was "not playing by the rules" and doesn't "care about the party." "If they don't get what they want, they blow it up," said Manafort.

Trump's campaign was not "playing in Colorado" and had succeeded with efforts with Nevada, Alabama and Michigan. Trump is running his own campaign and was doing well on a model that made sense, but now, as the campaign has gotten to the end stages, a more traditional campaign has to take place, Manafort said.